President Moon Jae-in named a new secretary Wednesday to work for resumption of inter-Korean cooperation and coordination of the issue with the United States, amid efforts to keep US-North Korea denuclearization talks from falling apart.
Choi Jong-kun was appointed the new presidential secretary for peace at the National Security Office, the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said.
The 45-year-old former international relations professor has been working at the NSO, serving as the secretary for arms control, a post that was replaced by a new secretary for security strategy.
Noh Kyu-duk, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has been named the secretary for security strategy.
The reorganization of the presidential security office follows the second bilateral meeting between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un that ended without a much-anticipated deal.
After his Hanoi meeting abruptly ended, the US president asked his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in, to help narrow the gap between his country and North Korea by working as a mediator.
A Cheong Wa Dae official earlier said the new secretary for peace will likely focus on discussing ways to ease US and international sanctions on the impoverished North, Pyongyang's key demand for its denuclearization, while making preparations for the resumption of inter-Korean economic projects.
Moon has repeatedly stressed the need to motivate the North with rewards to further accelerate its denuclearization process.
Even before Trump headed to Hanoi for his second meeting with Kim, Moon had offered to resume his country's economic cooperation with the communist North as one of the options that can be used by the US to reward the North for its denuclearization steps. (Yonhap)