High Representative Federica Mogherini and Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, today welcomed to Brussels Professor Yoon Je Cho, the Special Envoy of President Moon Jae-in of the Republic of Korea.
The decision of President Moon to send a special envoy to the EU is an indication of the strength of the Strategic Partnership between the EU and Korea.
Mogherini said they had discussed perspectives on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula. “We have had excellent exchanges with the Ambassador, agreeing to continue to work together and even intensify the work that the European Union and Korea can do to solve the problem, trying to de-escalate the tensions, obviously continuing to implement the sanctions that the European Union has in place together with the rest of the international community, but also and mainly trying to open a political channel for negotiations,” she told the media.
“I believe that we will partner very well with President Moon and the rest of the international community, but we have established a very strong and direct link so the European Union experience in this field - including from the negotiations we have led on the Iranian nuclear programme - are at the disposal of this process and can be further explored in the future.”
“This is an extremely important step. First of all, the recognition of the role of the European Union on the global scene and also the specific competence and experience that the European Union has developed on the nuclear non-proliferation agenda that is obviously at the disposal of the entire international community in this particular moment. We also share the same view that any risk of military escalation in and around the Korean Peninsula should be avoided. This is priority number one in this moment. We have discussed this also with China, with Russia, with India recently. We will have a summit with China coming up soon so we will continue to remain extremely engaged but especially with a direct channel with Seoul on these issues,” the High Representative added.
The EU will continue its work to promote respect for human rights in DPRK and to ensure that the current sanctions regimes regarding North Korea are effectively implemented by the international community. The EU is implementing all the restrictive measures imposed by the UN Security Council and its additional autonomous restrictive measures on the DPRK are the most stringent the EU has on any third country. The EU calls upon North Korea to engage in a credible and meaningful dialogue with the international community and is ready to support such dialogue.