South Korean Unification Minister Lee In-young will meet with officials in Germany, Belgium and Sweden from today until October 4 as part of a North-South peacemaking initiative.
As the 31st anniversary of the reunification of Germany draws near, Lee is expected to meet German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on how Germany’s reunification could be applied to inter-Korean relations. Overall, the trip will cover peacemaking talks on the Korean situation as Lee seeks to procure active mediation from major EU players and expert advice from European think-tanks. In Sweden, officials are set to focus on their role in the improvement of inter-Korean and US-North Korean relations.
Lee In-young has been taking a more active role in North-South relations since North Korea demolished the inter-Korean liaison office in June last year. Regrouping with senior European officials designated to the issues on the Korean Peninsula will be effective from an information-gathering perspective in the short-term. However, the reality of inter-Korean relations is incomparable to that of a once divided Germany. Strategies by the Western bloc have fallen flat post-Hanoi as regular nuclear provocations from North Korea are maintained and the most recent calls by South Korea to formally end the Korean War are rejected.
Sabrine is an Analyst for Foreign Brief and a graduate student at Yonsei University in South Korea, specializing in foreign policy and security in East Asia. Previously, she contributed as a freelance writer for online publications and worked as a sub-editor for the Daily NK.