Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged the South Korean government to be wary of being dragged around by North Korea as Seoul seeks to quickly improve soured cross-border relations.
In a keynote speech at a global diplomacy and security forum at the National Assembly on Wednesday, Ban said South-North relations should be approached based on the principles of mutual respect and reciprocity.
Describing the Moon Jae-in administration’s North Korea policies as “astounding and deplorable,” he argued that taking a unilateral stance to understand and support Pyongyang will put Seoul in a position of being continuously pushed around by the regime.
Ban claimed that unrequited love toward the North is not only unhelpful in resolving inter-Korean issues, but does not go in step with what he called the “cold-hearted” nature of global diplomatic circles.
Addressing Moon’s recent reshuffle of key posts regarding inter-Korean and national security issues, Ban said efforts to resolve conflicts in the short-term will put South Korea in an increasingly difficult position and called on the government not to beg the North.
Ban, who now heads Seoul’s National Council on Climate and Air Quality(NCCA), also dismissed attempts to resolve North Korean issues by formally ending the Korean War as being inefficient.