RSIS Distinguished Public Lecture by His Excellency Suh Wook, Minister of National Defense, Republic of Korea
Republic of Korea’s Role for Regional Peace and Prosperity
The US-China competition for global leadership has become more complex amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Given that cooperation with both the US and China are essential for peace on the Korean Peninsula, the Republic of Korea (ROK) aims to rely on two types of security strategies to cope with the current dilemma. First, the ROK seeks to alleviate regional tensions caused by the US-China competition. This involves strengthening bilateral and multilateral security cooperation with like-minded partners, such as ASEAN and its member states. Second, the ROK aims to pursue collaboration in the spirit of ‘solidarity and cooperation’. This is especially relevant in the fight against non-traditional security threats such as climate change and pandemics, which require transnational cooperation.
The peace settlement of the Korean Peninsula will dissolve the very last structure of the Cold War and remove the permanent threat of war. Furthermore, it will contribute to global security and economic prosperity. Through the consistent pursuit of the peace process on the Korean Peninsula, the ROK will continue to endeavour to achieve the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and build eternal peace.
About the Speaker
Suh Wook is the Minister of National Defense of the Republic of Korea (ROK) since his appointment in September 2020. Prior to his current appointment, he was the 48th Chief of Staff of the ROK Army (2019–20); Chief Director, Operations J-3, Joint Chiefs of Staff (2017–19); and, Commanding General, 1st Corps (2016–17). He graduated from the Korea Military Academy in 1985 and holds an M.A. in Military Strategy from the Korea National Defense University. He is married with two daughters.