South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol and U.S. President Joe Biden have strengthened their pact on nuclear deterrence, aiming to enhance the credibility of the U.S.’ extended deterrence commitment to South Korea. The two leaders engaged in discussions during a bilateral meeting before a trilateral summit with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland.
In a press release, the presidential office stated that both leaders acknowledged the successful implementation of the Washington Declaration, which was agreed upon in April. They highlighted the achievements made through the launch of the South Korea-U.S. Nuclear Consultative Group (NCG) and the deployment of a U.S. nuclear submarine. Additionally, they expressed their commitment to continue working closely together to strengthen extended deterrence credibility.
President Biden once again affirmed the U.S.’ steadfast defense commitment and extended deterrence commitment to South Korea. Extended deterrence refers to the U.S.’ promise to utilize its military capabilities, including nuclear weapons, in order to defend its ally.
This meeting between President Yoon and President Biden follows their last bilateral meeting in April during President Yoon’s state visit to Washington. During the visit, the Washington Declaration was adopted, aiming to establish the NCG and increase the visibility of U.S. strategic assets on the Korean Peninsula.
Throughout their discussions, both leaders reaffirmed their strong determination to achieve sustainable peace on the Korean Peninsula through the complete denuclearization of North Korea. They also agreed to enhance cooperation in countering North Korea’s illicit activities, such as labor exports and cyber operations, and to block channels that provide funding for North Korea’s nuclear and missile development.
Economic security and cutting-edge technologies were also prominent topics during the meeting. The leaders acknowledged the close collaboration between their countries in these areas and expressed hope for further cooperation in artificial intelligence, semiconductors, and nuclear power.
Another significant outcome of the meeting was the agreement on South Korea’s efforts to normalize its relations with Japan. President Biden praised President Yoon’s role in laying the foundation for strengthened South Korea-U.S.-Japan cooperation. Both leaders believe that the trilateral summit with Prime Minister Kishida will open new opportunities for enhanced cooperation among the three countries.
The bilateral meeting between President Yoon Suk Yeol and President Joe Biden is a testament to the longstanding alliance between South Korea and the United States. By reiterating their commitment to extended deterrence and discussing various regional and global issues, the leaders have solidified their cooperation and resolved to work together in pursuit of peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula.