United States Secretary of State John Kerry in Korea to Discuss North Korea Issues
kpride, May 17, 2015, 2:21 p.m.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to arrive in South Korea later Sunday to discuss North Korea's missile and nuclear threats and other security issues. Kerry will be making his first visit to South Korea since February last year. He will meet South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se on Monday.
Last week, the Foreign Ministry said Kerry and Yun would discuss preparations for summit talks between leaders of the two nations in Washington next month, and also enhancing the bilateral alliance, with regional security currently at a sensitive juncture.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un allegedly purged his defense minister, Hyon Yong-chol, for a show of disloyalty and disrespect to him. The communist nation also fired hundreds of rounds of artillery shells last week in live-fire drills near the western sea border with the South.
Prior to meeting Yun in Seoul, Kerry plans to pay a courtesy call on President Park Geun-hye. He is also scheduled to visit the South Korea-U.S. Combined Forces Command and deliver a lecture on cybersecurity at Korea University before heading back to the United States.
Kerry will be flying in from Beijing, where he met with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. The U.S. diplomat called on North Korea "to live up to its international obligations," saying its "destabilizing behaviors are unacceptable."