Minister of Foreign Affairs Meets with US Senators

김종관 기자l승인2019.05.14

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On the afternoon of April 24, Minister of Foreign Affairs Kang Kyung-wha met with Senators of the United States Chris Coons and Maggie Hassan, during which the two sides exchanged views on issues concerning the Republic of Korea-United States relations and the situation on the Korean Peninsula.

Minister Kang extended appreciation to the US Congress for its unswerving nonpartisan support for the ROK-US alliance; mentioned that while maintaining the momentum of dialogue with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in close collaboration between them, the ROK and the US are making efforts to achieve the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula; and asked for continued attention and cooperation of the US Congress in this regard.

The Senators, underscoring their strong support for the ROK-US alliance, a linchpin of security on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia, said that Congress will continue efforts for the development of the ironclad ROK-US alliance and a peaceful resolution of the North Korean nuclear issue.

Kang Meets with Members of US Congressional Study Group on Korea

On April 15, Minister of Foreign Affairs Kang Kyung-wha met with members of the United States Congressional Study Group on Korea (CSGK) who are on a visit to the Republic of Korea, and exchanged views on the situation on the Korean Peninsula and issues regarding the ROK-US relations, including the outcome of the ROK-US summit on April 11.

Minister Kang said that the ROK-US summit on April 11 was meaningful as it served as an opportunity for the Presidents of the two countries to reaffirm their shared goal of complete denuclearization and the establishment of permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula, as well as their commitment to resolving the North Korean nuclear issue through dialogue and negotiations.

The members of the CSGK said that President Moon Jae-in’s recent visit to the US helped facilitate US-North Korea dialogue to solve the North Korean nuclear problem, adding that they would also play their role in the US Congress to contribute to the denuclearization process on the Korean Peninsula.

3rd Joint Commission Meeting between ROK and Indonesia

Minister of Foreign Affairs Kang Kyung-wha held the 3rd Joint Commission Meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia Retno L.P. Marsudi in Jakarta on April 8. The 3rd Joint Commission Meeting took place pursuant to the agreement reached between the Presidents of the two countries during Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s state visit to the ROK in September last year. 

In the meeting attended by a number of officials from relevant government agencies of the two countries, the two sides engaged in in-depth discussions on major issues between the two countries, ways to increase substantive cooperation, and people-to-people and cultural exchanges. 

Minister Kang, saying that Indonesia is a key partner in the ROK government’s New Southern Policy, expressed appreciation to the Indonesian side for showing full support in the process leading up to the ROK’s public announcement of the dates (Nov. 25-27) and venue (Busan) of the 2019 ASEAN-ROK Commemorative Summit and the 1st Mekong-ROK Summit on April 1, and requested Indonesia’s active participation and support for the ROK’s preparation for the meetings. 

Minister Retno welcomed the ROK’s announcement of the dates and venue for the ASEAN-ROK Commemorative Summit, and said that Indonesia would continue to actively participate and support efforts to ensure a successful ASEAN-ROK Commemorative Summit. 

The two Ministers discussed in depth the situation on the Korean Peninsula, and agreed to continue close communications and cooperation between the two countries to achieve complete denuclearization and to establish a permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula.

Latvia and Korea launches direct flights from 24 May 2019 

The first direct commercial charter flight between Korea and Latvia operated by KOREAN AIR will take off from Incheon airport on 24 May and the same day will land in Riga International airport – one of the geographically closest EU airports to Korea. Two more direct flights are scheduled for 31 May and 7 June. This year charter flight program is organized by HANJIN TRAVEL, one of the largest Korean tour agencies, with support from the Latvian Embassy in the Republic of Korea, the Tourism Department of the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA), Riga International Airport, and Riga Tourism Development Bureau LIVE RIGA.

These will be the first direct commercial flights between the capital cities of Latvia and the Republic of Korea, expected to carry about 700 passengers. Travel packages are sold by HANJIN TRAVEL and its agents’ offices and also available online. Travellers will have the opportunity to visit all three Baltic States by choosing between HANJIN TRAVEL well customized and carefully planned offers.

A brochure on Latvia has been produced in the Korean language, and Baltic maps and a Riga brochure have been translated; these publications will be made available for each passenger of the charter flights.

In the late 2018 in New York, the Foreign Ministers of Latvia and the Republic of Korea signed the Air Traffic Agreement, which was ratified by the Latvian Parliament in January 2019. The coming into force of the agreement establishes the legal framework for launching regular direct flights between the two countries.

By establishing direct flights between Latvia and Korea, Latvia sees significant further development in tourism, business exchanges, people-to-people exchanges, culture and other fields. Since Latvia is one of the geographically closest EU countries to Korea, Korean travellers to Europe will also benefit by reducing flight time and reaching their final destinations, especially in the Northern Europe much faster than before.


김종관 기자  powerkorea_j@naver.com
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