South Korea’s new president pledges to pull the country out of the latest crises and proposes a “bold plan” for North Korea
SEOUL – South Korea’s new President Yoon Suk-yeol has pledged to build a society based on freedom and fairness, and to lead the country out of multiple crises, including the global Covid-19 pandemic, economic growth record high and rising unemployment.
“It is the call of our generation to build a nation that embraces liberal democracy and ensures a thriving market economy, a nation that assumes its responsibility as a trusted member of the international community and a nation that truly belongs to the people,” he said in his inaugural speech on Tuesday, May 10.
“We can overcome the challenges we face today and those we will undoubtedly face in the future.”
Mr. Yoon, 61, was sworn in on Tuesday morning, in front of some 41,000 people who had gathered in the National Assembly Square.
Singapore President Halimah Yacob, US Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff and Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan were among the foreign guests at the ceremony.
Yoon’s inauguration comes at a time of rising tensions on the Korean Peninsula, with North Korea having carried out 15 missile tests since January, while nuclear talks with the United States have stalled since 2019 .
During his speech, Mr. Yoon offered to present “a bold plan that will significantly strengthen the North Korean economy and improve the quality of life of its people”, if the regime “truly embarks on a process of complete denuclearization “.
“North Korea’s nuclear weapons program is a threat – and not just to our security or that of Northeast Asia,” he said.
“The door to dialogue will remain open so that we can peacefully resolve this threat.”
Mr Yoon was elected in March on a promise to restore justice and fairness to a nation disappointed by the previous administration’s double standards and numerous policy failures, such as the failure to rein in soaring oil prices. real estate and to create quality jobs for young people.
He promised to strengthen South Korea’s military alliance with the United States and align itself more closely with Washington’s diplomacy, as well as improve soured relations with Japan and recalibrate relations with China. China.
He is also expected to take a tougher stance on North Korea compared to his pacifist predecessor Moon Jae-in, who has staked most of his political capital on a peace policy focused on peace. engagement with the North.
During his speech, Mr. Yoon noted that many countries, including South Korea, are facing multiple crises, ranging from armed conflicts to climate change, polarization, rising food costs and energy, rising unemployment and global supply chain disruptions.
“Belief in shared values is paramount if we are to successfully overcome these challenges,” he said, adding that freedom is a core value that must be embraced to allow prosperity to flourish.
Rapid and sustainable growth in areas such as science, technology and innovation will also help open up new opportunities and improve social mobility, “thereby helping us to get rid of the fundamental obstacles that deepen divisions and conflicts. social,” he said.