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Defense ministers of South Korea, Qatar to meet in Doha

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Defense ministers of South Korea, Qatar to meet in Doha

Photo: CNN

South Korean Defense Minister Shin Won-Sik will meet with his Qatari counterpart Khalid bin Mohamed Al Attiya today.

This visit caps off Minister Shin’s three-country trip to the Middle East. He previously visited the UAE and Saudi Arabia over the weekend. Shin visited the three countries to pursue goals of defense cooperation.

Tensions have been mounting on the Korean Peninsula, with North Korea testing cruise missiles and President Yoon taking a hardline stance against Supreme Leader Kim. Kim renounced goals for reunification in December and has declared South Korea an enemy.

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South Korea has successfully gained a footing in the international arms market in the past year and one of its reasons for its success centers around its increased defense production due to ramped up North Korean aggression. In the short term, this trip could produce defense agreements between the UAE and Saudi Arabia; but Qatar is slightly different, as it still holds some relations with North Korea. Expect Defense Minister Shin to focus heavily on swaying Qatar from North Korea, using South Korea’s success in the defense market as its resume. Shin wants defense cooperation with Qatar, and this meeting will test where Qatar’s strategic goals on the Korean peninsula lie.

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