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NATO invites S. Korea to Washington summit in July

April 3, 2024 - 20:49 By Yonhap
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks ahead of a NATO foreign ministerial meeting held at the NATO headquarters in Brussels on April 3, 2024, in this image captured from YouTube. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

The chief of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization said Wednesday leaders of South Korea and three other nations in the Indo-Pacific region were invited to the upcoming summit scheduled in July in Washington.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said South Korea was invited to the NATO summit for the third year as one of the non-NATO partners in the Indo-Pacific region, which include Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

"I welcome the fact that I have now invited for the third time the heads of state and government from New Zealand, Australia, Japan and South Korea, our partners of the Asia-Pacific, to attend the summit in Washington in July," Stoltenberg said as NATO foreign ministers met in Brussels.

President Yoon Suk Yeol was invited to the two previous NATO summits held in Spain in 2022 and Lithuania in 2023.

Stoltenberg emphasized the importance of working with NATO allies and partners to support Ukraine as "Russia's friends in Asia are vital" for continuing its war.

"North Korea and Iran are delivering substantial supplies of weapons and ammunition (to Russia). In return, Pyongyang and Tehran are receiving Russian technology and supplies that help them advance their missile and nuclear capabilities," he said.

Stoltenberg said like-minded nations should work together in various areas, including technology, cyber and hybrid threats, to address "regional and global security consequences" stemming from Russia's deepening ties with its partners.

"So, like-minded nations around the world need to stand together to defend a global order ruled by law, not by force," he said.

Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yul attended the session of NATO allies and its partners to discuss the current security situation in the Indo-Pacific region and express Seoul's commitment to strengthening cooperation with NATO, according to the foreign ministry. (Yonhap)