SEOUL — South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on Friday that his country will never stop efforts for the denuclearization of and the peace settlement in the Korean Peninsula.
“(South) Korea will never cease its efforts to end the (Korean) War for good, achieve denuclearization, and establish permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula,” Moon said in a prerecorded keynote speech delivered at the Jeju Forum 2020, according to the presidential Blue House. The Jeju Forum is an annually-held international peace forum at the country’s southern resort island of Jeju. “Even though the Armistice Agreement was signed, without a peace treaty in place, the Korean War has not ended yet, and neither has the pain and sorrow of the War,” Moon noted.
The peninsula remains in a technical state of war as the 1950-1953 Korean War ended with a truce, not a peace treaty. Moon has sought a political declaration to end the Korean War. “I want to stress once again that peace and prosperity in Northeast Asia as a whole cannot be achieved without peace on the Korean Peninsula,” Moon said. Denuclearization talks between the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the United States have been stalled since the second summit between top DPRK leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump ended without agreement at the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi in February 2019.
Moon reiterated his call to launch a “Northeast Asia cooperation initiative for infectious disease control and public health,” which he advocated at the United Nations General Assembly in September to involve countries in the region as well as South Korea and the DPRK. “Having gone through human-to-human and domestic animal infectious diseases and natural disaster together, the South and the North (DPRK) have been repeatedly reminded that the two are a single community of life and safety,” Moon noted. He added that the initiative would “save lives and protect safety of all and pave the path toward peace on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia and beyond.”