Unification Minister Lee In-young on Monday asked Russia to play a "constructive" role in moving stalled inter-Korean relations forward and building a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula.
Lee made the request during his first meeting with Russian Ambassador to Seoul Andrey B. Kulik sine his inauguration in July, also stressing the need for Moscow's cooperation in pursuing three-way projects involving the two Koreas and Russia that he said would contribute to peace and prosperity in the Northeast Asian and Eurasian regions.
"I appreciate the friendship and solidarity that (your country) has shown so far and ask for constructive cooperation for peace on the Korean Peninsula," Lee said.
"I believe that the three-way cooperation involving the South, the North and Russia is an important matter that can contribute to peace and co-prosperity in the Northeast Asian and Eurasian regions," he added.
Lee reaffirmed his will to push for cooperative projects with North Korea in areas where they are possible right now, saying joint efforts in the humanitarian area will be one of them.
"I am confident that consistent efforts on such a small-scale approach could lead to the time of trust and faith. In this process, cooperation from the international community, especially from Russia, is a must."
The Russian ambassador voiced support for dialogue between the two Koreas, saying, in particular, that cross-border exchanges can play a "very important" role in resolving Korean Peninsula issues. (Yonhap)