About Us Republic of Korea

STATEMENT BY
H.E. MR. SHIN KAK-SOO
VICE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND TRADE OF THE REPUBLIC OF KOREA
 
Your Excellency Abdullah Gul and
Your Excellency Nursultan Nazarbayev,
Co-chairs of the CICA Summit,
Distinguished Delegates,
 
It is a great honor and pleasure for me to participate in the Third CICA Summit on behalf of the Government of Republic of Korea.
 
May I extend my sincere thanks to the Government of the Republic of Turkey for the warm welcome and hospitality as well as the excellent preparations for this summit meeting. And I also take this opportunity to extend our special gratitude to His Excellency President Nursultan Nazarbayev of the Republic of Kazakhstan for his outstanding leadership of CICA over the past 18 years.
 
And our heartfelt congratulations go to the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the Republic of Iraq on their accession to CICA.
 
On behalf of the Government of the Republic of Korea, I would also like to take this opportunity to express deep regret over the tragic loss of lives and injuries caused as a result of the use of force against the flotilla going to Gaza, and to extend condolences and sympathies to the brotherly people of Turkey and the bereaved family of the victims.
 
Excellencies, 
 
Encompassing all the regions of the Northeast, Southeast, Central and Southwest Asia as well as the Middle East, CICA does indeed cover a vast area with great historical and cultural diversity. Yet this diversity has not presented an obstacle. Rather, CICA has tapped this diversity and channeled it positively. With a whole range of regional dialogues and confidence-building measures, CICA is fostering trust amid diversity, contributing tremendously to the promotion of peace and security in the region. For this, the Republic of Korea pays tribute to all those who have made valuable contributions toward the development of CICA.
 
The Republic of Korea has attached great value to the role of CICA as a cooperative mechanism for the promotion of regional security. After joining CICA as an observer in 1993, the Republic of Korea became a full-fledged member in 2006. We place particular value on the confidence-building process being developed under the CICA framework.
 
Starting from 2007, the Republic of Korea has been serving as the coordinating country in two areas of "Energy Security" and "IT Cooperation." Korea has been playing a leading role in advancing confidence-building measures in these two key areas. Indeed, this was well demonstrated by the successful holding of the Experts Meetings on the said two areas in Seoul in 2009.
 
Excellencies, 
 
We are vigorously pursuing "New Asia Initiative" with a view to fostering deeper bonds of cooperation with neighbors and bringing even greater shared prosperity in Asia.
 
To promote stability and development in Asia, we are relying on a myriad of ways such as expanding trade and investment, forming stronger partnership in development cooperation, and sharing our experience of economic growth. People-to-people exchanges also have played a crucial part in bolstering the foundations for the solid ties of cooperation in a whole range of fields.
 
I am sure that our efforts to enhance regional cooperation and interaction in Asia are ultimately contributing to confidence-building in the region. It is true that this broad approach lies at the very heart of the vision embraced by CICA.
 
Excellencies,
 
On March 26, a tragic incident took place in the territorial waters of the Republic of Korea. As a result of a surreptitious armed attack by a North Korean torpedo, the ROK Navy patrol ship, the corvette Cheonan, sank, claiming the innocent lives of 46 young sailors.
 
The sinking of the Corvette Cheonan by North Korea was in flagrant violation of the United Nations Charter, the 1953 Korean Armistice Agreement and the 1992 Inter-Korean Basic Agreement. Furthermore, the lamentable provocation directly runs counter to the very spirit of CICA, since CICA was launched with the lofty goal of building mutual confidence and preventing conflicts among Asian countries.
 
The international community should not turn a blind eye to North Korea's provocations. This incident reminded the international community of the lesson that the lack of appropriate censure against North Korea's misdeed by the international community on several occasions in the past has led to the sporadic recurrence of serious challenges to the international peace and security.
 
Excellencies, 
 
Even in the face of a number of difficulties both within and outside the region, CICA has made a steady progress in promoting peace and security in Asia. The Republic of Korea expects CICA to further build upon the current undertakings to still further strengthen the mutual cooperation and interaction. We have every confidence that CICA will continue to grow, emerging as an ever stronger multilateral security forum in the entire Asian region.
 
In particular, Korea looks forward to the full implementation of the Cooperative Approach for the Implementation of the CICA CBMs adopted in 2007. I am convinced that this action will contribute to the deepening of the solid bonds of cooperation among member states. 
 
Moreover, CICA should continue to explore new areas for cooperation in this ever-changing global environment.
 
In closing, I would like to reiterate our firm commitment to strengthen our cooperation with members of CICA in pursuing the lofty goal of promoting peace and security that binds us in CICA.
 
Thank you very much.