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Sejong Policy Series

The Way to Nuclear-Free and Peaceful Korean Peninsula
2018.12.17  Monday
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Cheong Seong-Chang, Kim Jin Moo, Kim Yeol-su, Jun Bong-Geun

This book analyzes the environment surrounding North Korea’s acceptance of denuclearization and North Korea’s nuclear capabilities and presents the directions for denuclearization process, the establishment of a peace regime, and arms control on the Korean Peninsula. Several points may be attributable to Chairman Kim Jong-un’s sudden acceptance to the negotiations on denuclearization and pursuit to improve relations with South Korea and the international community: confidence in the advancement of nuclear and missile capabilities; intensified isolation due to the international community’s extra-harsh sanctions; President Moon’s passionate determination for inter-Korean dialogue; President Trump’s resolve to talk directly with Chairman Kim; China’s cooperation, etc.

At the Panmunjom inter-Korean summit, President Moon Jae-in and Chairman Kim Jong-un shied away from the international legal and bureaucratic approach and opted for a political and transactional approach for denuclearization and the settlement of peace. The Trump administration also abandoned the normative approach of nuclear non-proliferation in Singapore and has pursued a political approach. South Korea and the U.S. should primarily urge North Korea to halt production of nuclear materials and warheads and discard medium-to-long range missiles. In return, they need to provide diplomatic and economic compensation as corresponding measures and ease sanctions.

At the current stage, it is rather important to have an optimistic and positive mindset as such mindset engenders a firm resolve to push North Korea to renounce its nuclear ambition. And the South Korean government should provide a guarantee of North Korea’s safety specifically leading an international consortium as well as actively being engaged in the discussion to establish a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula.

On the arms control of conventional weapons on the Korean Peninsula, it should set the objectives of arms control and the action principles to achieve these objectives. The two Koreas should open their military capabilities that go beyond the details in the defense white paper, carry out student exchanges in different military academies, conduct mutual visits of warships and aircraft of each other, and mutual observation of large-scale military exercises, etc. all as confidence-building measures between the two sides.



Volume: 2018-10

Publication Date: December 10, 2018

183 Pages​​, Paperback