KOREAN UNBELIEVABLE PEACE INITIATIVE

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INTRODUCTION


Korean Peninsula is back in the Centre stage of the world arena, this time for all politically correct reasons. As hopes for peace and reconciliation surge in the Korean Peninsula, Seoul and Pyongyang are gearing up for a reconstruction of diplomatic relationship. The irony is, both the North and South Korea are formally committed to the idea of unification. However, this ideology has not gotten the divided Peninsula very far. Even the most optimistic scenario does not envisage the disappearance of North Korea as a state. What is being considered as a realistic possibility is a peace treaty, an open border, greater economic and commercial cooperation. But the current bonhomie is fanned by the idea that – after all, Korean people are one. In Korea its significant to understand that denuclearization is a precondition for peace and tranquility in the region. The foxy ‘Kim Jong-Un’ created tremendous hype and media-glare by accelerating the development of nuclear weapons and missiles as nuke delivery systems. Once he was confident of his deterrent, from a position of strength, Kim opened the door for peace negotiations with the South Korea and US. It’s common knowledge that the world powers used Korean Peninsula as a chess board during Cold War era, for one-up-man-ship. The Peninsula was a frontline theatre in the conflict between the East and West. The United States and the People’s Republic of China fought a pitched battle in the Korean Peninsula during 1950- 53.After the Cold War era, the US, China, Russia and Japan have played an active role in promoting peace in the region, through the framework of 6 party dialogue involving the two Koreas.

Salient Features of the Peace Summit

North Korea’s leader ‘Kim Jong-Un’ made a historic announcement in the presence of President Moon Jae-in of South Korea that he would abandon his nuclear weapons if the United States would agree to formally end the Korean War and promise that it would not invade his country. As a faith building gesture ahead of a summit meeting with President Trump, Kim also said he would invite experts and journalists from South Korea and US watch the shut down next month of his country’s only known underground nuclear testing site. Both the world leaders met at Panmunjom, a village on their shared border. “ I know the Americans are inherently, disposed against us, but when they talk with us, they will see that I am not the kind of person who would shoot nuclear weapons to the South , over Pacific, or at the US. Ironically, Kim was actually threatening to do exactly the same atrocities against these countries. It was another dramatically conciliatory statement by Kim. Among speculations by the world media that the friendly gestures made by the North Korean leader was out of character and not genuine, and whether they would turn-out to be empty promises aimed at lifting sanctions on his isolated country. On 27 Apr 2018, Kim and Moon signed a joint declaration recognising “a nuclear – free Korean Peninsula “and “complete denuclearization “as a common goal of the two Koreas. However Kim never publicly renounced his nuclear weapons in the broadcasted summit events. On 30 April 2018, Kim appeared to hedge his bet, indicating that denuclearizing his country could be a long process that required multiple rounds of negotiations and steps to build trust. But he laid out a vague idea of what his impoverished country would demand in return for giving up its nuclear weapons. “ If we meet often and build trust with US and if an end to the war and nonaggression are promised, why we would live in difficulty with nuclear weapons?” Kim quipped. Moon has been briefing US President Trump about the contents of the meeting. Kim reportedly said that he and Trump could ”get along well” to which Trump responded that he ”looked forward” to their historic meeting. Moon also spoke with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, to convey Kim’s willingness to also open dialogue with Tokyo, which has also felt threatened by the North Korea’s nuclear weapons and missile development. The peacemaking comments have been a dramatic turnaround for Kim, who drove the peninsula close to the brink to a nuclear holocaust, by a show of strength to the world.

CONCLUSION

The diplomatic overtures of Kim and his unprecedented peace efforts have taken the world to a pleasant surprise, leaving many critics wonder whether it’s a political stunt. Kim’s announcement to close the nuclear test-site in mountainous Punggye-ri in Northeast Korea subject to few demands he wants to negotiate with US and South Korea has been widely welcomed by the world countries. Folks, Kim offers a lesson to our sub continent too. Delhi and Islamabad can also rethink their diplomatic strategies from the unfolding prospects for peace and tranquility in the Korean Peninsula and a major transformation in the relations between Seoul and Pyongyang. Kim’s new initiative is a reminder for Pakistan — that nuclear weapons are not an end in themselves. And that the leverage offered by nuclear weapons could be traded for economic benefit and normalisation of relations with adversaries. But Pakistan army pursue a different agenda of power game. Hence the South Asian stalemate between India and Pakistan is likely to endure, even as South and North Korea appear poised to turn the page and look optimistic for a unification of nations, in future. JAI HIND