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Speeches and Contributions

Congratulatory Speech at the 2019 Unification Policy Forum hosted by the Korean Council for Reconciliation and Cooperation

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장수민
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2019-04-22
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Congratulatory Speech at the 2019 Unification Policy Forum hosted by the Korean Council for Reconciliation and Cooperation

14:00 on April 22, 2019 at the Korea Press Center in Seoul

Congratulatory Speech

By Unification Minister Kim Yeon Chul


1.
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
It is good to see you all. I am Unification Minister Kim Yeon Chul.

I would like to extend my sincere congratulations to you on holding the 2019 Unification Policy Forum hosted by the Korean Council for Reconciliation and Cooperation (KCRC) to mark the first anniversary of the April 27 Panmunjeom Declaration.

I would like to express my deep gratitude to the KCRC for inviting me to this meaningful event.

I would also like to extend my appreciation to the experts for participating in the presentations and discussions and all those who took time out of their busy schedules to join us today.

On this occasion, I would like to extend my heartfelt condolences and consolation to KCRC Chairman Kim Hong-gul. His brother, former lawmaker Kim Hong-il, passed away just this last Saturday.


2.
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
President Moon Jae-in, in his speech marking the March 1st Independence Movement, declared a new Korean Peninsula regime as a national vision to open the next 100 years of the Republic of Korea.

The new Korean Peninsula regime refers to an initiative in which we, the masters of the Korean Peninsula, should take the lead in creating a new history of the next 100 years.

To be sure, there are many mountains to climb and many rivers to cross. However, 2019 should be a year when we reflect on the past 100 years and design the next 100 years.

The next 100 years will be an era of peace and coexistence in which the people on the Korean Peninsula put an end to the age-old confrontation and conflict, and acknowledge each other and live together.

If the two Koreas work together with neighboring countries to make and share the profits of their endeavors, the South Korean economy will improve and we will usher in an era of mutual benefit and common prosperity in which all the people on the Korean Peninsula enjoy better lives.

The Korean Peninsula, long a stage for hot war and cold war, will transform itself into a center of peace in Northeast Asia.

Now is the time when we should make a start toward the next 100 years. The process won’t be easy. However, if all people are united and the two Koreas work together, we can overcome all difficulties.

The forum addresses specific ways to realize the new Korean Peninsula regime.

Because we are joined by the best experts in inter-Korean relations and many of those who are active in the KCRC and its member organizations, I expect that they will make significant proposals to the government.


3.
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
The KCRC has transcended the differences between the ruling and opposition parties, between ideologies, regions, generations, and social classes, and has led pan-national cooperation and activity in unification over the past 21 years.

The KCRC has effectively reconciled conflicting opinions on North Korea policy.

In the process of building peace on the Korean Peninsula, peace in our society is essential. The KCRC has strived to overcome the division within our society.

It has also continued to carry out exchange and cooperation with the North at the non-government level with unwavering determination, even during the most trying moments in inter-Korean relations.

I ask the KCRC to gather the hearts of the people, who yearn for peace and unification, and to take the lead in the journey toward mutual understanding and reconciliation between the South and North Korean people.

Furthermore, I ask the KCRC to play a central role in the process of achieving unification, the Korean people’s wish, by realizing the new Korean Peninsula regime.

The government will do everything it can to support you.

Once again, I sincerely thank all of you for participating in the forum, and I wish the forum a great success.

Thank you.