President Moon Jae-in exchanged a phone call with US President Donald Trump late on Wednesday, marking his first official interaction with a foreign head of state since taking office as South Korea’s 19th president earlier the same day.
Both state chiefs underlined the importance of their bilateral ties amid the recently escalating turbulence in the Korean Peninsula and in the surrounding states.
South Korea's President Moon Jae-in (right) receives a call from US counterpart Donald Trump late Wednesday. (Yonhap)
South Korea’s new president, who took office earlier in the day, received a call from the US leader at around 10:30 p.m. and the two spoke for about 30 minutes, according to South Korea’s presidential office Cheong Wa Dae.
Congratulating Moon on his election win, Trump invited Moon to pay an official visit to Washington for a summit and for a joint celebration of their becoming president.
“I am glad that President Trump came to be the first (among foreign state leaders) to make a congratulatory call,” Moon reciprocated.
The two then placed focus on the Korea-US ties, in relation to North Korea’s military provocations.
“The bilateral alliance has always been the root of our diplomatic and national security policies, and will continue to remain so,” Moon said, pledging to dispatch an envoy to Washington as soon as possible.
Trump also said that he would send an advisory group to Seoul to discuss Moon’s incoming visit to the US and to further develop bilateral relations, Cheong Wa Dae added.
By Bae Hyun-jung (firstname.lastname@example.org)