South Korea's Moon Wants Summit With Trump Before April 15 General Elections - Reports

South Korea's Moon Wants Summit With Trump Before April 15 General Elections - Reports

South Korean authorities plan to organize a summit between President Moon Jae-in and his US counterpart, Donald Trump, before South Korea's parliamentary elections slated for April 15, media reported on Friday, citing a South Korean government source

SEOUL (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 14th February, 2020) South Korean authorities plan to organize a summit between President Moon Jae-in and his US counterpart, Donald Trump, before South Korea's parliamentary elections slated for April 15, media reported on Friday, citing a South Korean government source.

"Cheong Wa Dae [the South Korean presidential office] has recently sounded out the possibility of a summit with Trump through various channels. Cheong Wa Dae keeps trying, though it's unlikely that they will meet given Trump's busy schedule in his own presidential campaign," the source said, as quoted by The Chosun Ilbo newspaper.

According to the media outlet, the relevant requests were made to the US during a recent visit by South Korea's deputy national security adviser, Kim Hyun-chong, and other presidential officials to Washington. South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha is also expected to push for the summit at her meeting with US State Secretary Mike Pompeo during the upcoming Munich Security Conference, the publication said.

Initially, it was planned that the summit could be used to announce the successful conclusion of negotiations on the sharing of expenses for joint defense, as well as the revision of missile guidelines for South Korea that would restrict the development of ballistic missiles of a certain range by Seoul.

However, given that the talks have not yet come to an end, the summit is supposed to be used to try to find a final solution at the presidential level.

At the same time, a diplomatic source notes that the main reason for holding the summit is Moon's desire to boost his approval ratings ahead of the general elections.

"Summit diplomacy tends to drive up the approval ratings of both the president and the ruling party. It seems that Cheong Wa Dae is now seeking another summit with Trump because Chinese President Xi Jinping is not going to visit South Korea any time soon due to the coronavirus outbreak," the source said, as quoted by the news outlet.

According to the source, organizing a visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin to South Korea also seems quite problematic.

Earlier this week, South Korean deputy national security adviser Kim Hyun-chong arrived in Moscow. The official told reporters on Wednesday that he would discuss the details of Putin's upcoming trip to South Korea and other pending issues related to bilateral relations.

South Korean Ambassador to Russia Lee Sok-bae said in January that South Korea and Russia were actively negotiating the possibility of exchanging high- and top-level visits in 2020, and were also coordinating the dates of Putin's possible visit to the country.

Your Thoughts and Comments