South Korea seeks to stabilize relations with China, Russia

  • Seoul, Beijing, Tokyo in talks to hold trilateral summit within this year, says South Korea’s foreign ministry as the country seeks to stabilize diplomatic relations with China and Russia that have grown strained amid increasing geopolitical confrontations between Seoul, Washington, Tokyo on one side and Pyongyang, Beijing and Moscow on the other.
  • This shift in approach is driven by the impending reopening of North Korea’s borders after a COVID-19 lockdown and its efforts to normalize relations with these two key allies.
  • China, wary of the expanding U.S.-led influence in Northeast Asia, has shown positive signals in response to South Korea’s efforts to mend bilateral ties, particularly after the trilateral summit involving South Korea, the U.S., and Japan. High-level meetings between senior diplomats of South Korea and China have taken place, focusing on economic ties and supply chain management.
  • South Korea’s Foreign Minister emphasized the importance of maintaining friendly relations with China, indicating a desire to develop a healthy partnership based on respect and common interests. The possibility of a trilateral summit involving South Korea, China, and Japan is gaining traction. Similarly, South Korea is working to maintain relations with Russia despite a challenging diplomatic environment stemming from the conflict in Ukraine. Mutual visits by senior diplomats and discussions around peace and denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula are viewed as positive steps towards enhancing cooperation between South Korea and Russia.

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