Biden arrives in South Korea for first summit with Yoon

May 20, 2022

SEOUL — US President Joe Biden arrived in South Korea on Friday for his first summit with President Yoon Suk-yeol on a range of issues including North Korea's nuclear program and supply chain risks, Yonhap News Agency reported.

Biden's Air Force One landed at Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, 70 km south of Seoul.

The US president three-day visit, his first since taking office, comes as both Seoul and Washington believe a North Korean nuclear or intercontinental ballistic missile test is imminent and could happen while he is in South Korea or Japan, the second leg of his tour.

On Saturday, Biden and Yoon will hold their first summit to discuss the full range of security and economic challenges facing the allies and the region, according to the report.

Top among them will be the growing threat of North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, and the two sides are expected to discuss ways to bolster their combined defense and deterrence, it said.

"(The summit) will be an opportunity for the relationship between South Korea and the US to become more solid and transition to an alliance covering a broader range," Yoon told reporters earlier Friday.

Kim Tae-hyo, first deputy director of the presidential National Security Office, told reporters earlier this week that the first thing the two sides will do during the summit will be to come up with an "action plan" for how South Korea and the US will "strengthen the reliable and effective extended deterrence." On Sunday, Biden and Yoon will plan to jointly visit the Korean Air and Space Operations Center located at Osan Air Base.

The joint event has been arranged as the allies are seeking to reinforce security coordination amid concerns about the possibilities of North Korean provocations, such as a long-range ballistic missile and nuclear test. — Agencies

May 20, 2022
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