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South Korea–Turkey Defense Talks in Turkey


On August 6, National Defense Minister Song Young-moo visited the brother country, Turkey, and held talks with his Turkish counterpart, Hulusi Akar, over security on the Korean Peninsula and cooperation in the defense industry. His visit is a follow-up to the South KoreaTurkey Summit between South Korean President, Moon Jae-in, and Turkey's President, Erdogan, last May.

 

Minister Song was greatly welcomed as the first foreign defense minister to visit Turkey since the country’s change to a presidential system and the reshuffling of its cabinet. Minister Akar said, “It is more meaningful for us, since the first foreign minister to visit our country as our friend is from South Korea.”

 

During the talks, Minister Song explained the outcomes of the recent inter-Korean and North KoreaU.S. summits and called for Turkey's active support and cooperation in efforts toward the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and the establishment of a lasting peace.

 

Minister Akar responded that "Turkey will continue to cooperate with South Korea for the denuclearization of North Korea, since peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula are directly linked to regional and international peace" and appreciated the South Korean government's diplomatic efforts to improve inter-Korean relations and establish peace on the Korean Peninsula.

 

The two ministers agreed on the expansion and development of the existing defense exchanges and cooperation between the two countries. “The two sides agreed to expand defense cooperation and exchanges through a series of measures, such as ▲exchanging high-level officials, ▲activating bilateral regular military dialogue, ▲visiting joint exercises, ▲exchanging military education, and ▲cooperating in military logistics,” the Ministry said.

 

In Turkey, Minister Song also met Ismail Demir, a top official in charge of the country’s defense industries, to check the status and hold an in-depth discussion on the actual measures for improving cooperation in the defense industry.

 

At the meeting, the two sides appreciated their close cooperation in the defense industry, for example, K-9 self-propelled artillery, and agreed on the need for further cooperation. The two sides agreed to resume within this year the Joint Committee for Cooperation in the Defense Industry, which had been established between the South Korean Defense Acquisition Program Administration and Turkish Defense Industries but was discontinued in 2014.

 

The Ministry of National Defense said, “We expect that the cooperation between the two countries in the defense industry would be invigorated when the Joint Committee for Cooperation in the Defense Industry resumes.”

 

 

By Su-Yeol, Maeng <guns13@dema.mil.kr >

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South Korea–Turkey Defense Talks in Turkey
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