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South Korea to hold first round of talks with China on Tues

By Thomson Reuters Jun 17, 2024 | 2:40 AM

SEOUL (Reuters) -South Korea and China will hold their first round of diplomatic and security dialogue on Tuesday, Seoul’s foreign ministry said on Monday, in line with an agreement the two nations made last month.

The talks will be led by South Korean vice foreign minister Kim Hong-kyun and his Chinese counterpart Sun Weidong, and joined by senior defence officials from both sides, the ministry said in a statement.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol and Chinese Premier Li Qiang agreed to launch the talks and resume free trade negotiations when they met last month in Seoul for a summit that included Japan.

During the meeting, “the two countries plan to exchange views on issues of mutual interest including bilateral relations, Korean peninsula issues and regional and international situations,” the ministry said.

The talks could coincide with a possible visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin to North Korea, which prompted Seoul and Washington to warn against further military exchanges in breach of U.N. Security Council resolutions.

Yoon has urged China and Russia to play a greater role as a permanent member of the Security Council, with Pyongyang racing to advance its nuclear and missile capabilities.

(Reporting by Hyonhee Shin; Editing by Clarence Fernandez and Bernadette Baum)