Yonhap News Agency
June 23, 2022

S. Korea to establish mission to NATO in Brussels

South Korea has decided to establish a mission to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Brussels, a presidential official said Wednesday ahead of President Yoon Suk-yeol’s participation in a NATO summit next week.

Yoon will attend the NATO summit in Madrid, Spain, on June 29 and 30, on his first overseas trip as president, National Security Adviser Kim Sung-han said during a press briefing.

South Korea…has been invited as a partner nation, along with countries, such as Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

The new NATO mission will be headed by the South Korean ambassador to Belgium, who currently also doubles as the ambassador to the European Union, a second presidential official said.

On the sidelines of the NATO gathering, Yoon could hold a trilateral summit with U.S. President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

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Kim Sung-han said Yoon’s attendance at the NATO summit will achieve three purposes, including strengthening the “value alliance” based on a liberal democracy with the 30 NATO member states and partner nations.

The president will also build the foundation for a “comprehensive security network” with NATO states….

“By establishing a NATO mission in Brussels, Belgium, where NATO is headquartered, we will be able to increase information-sharing and strengthen our networks with NATO members and partner nations,” Kim said.

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During a joint session with NATO members and partner nations, Yoon plans to speak for three minutes and emphasize his administration’s commitment to achieving North Korea’s denuclearization, the official added.

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