Lee Jae-myung (left) of the ruling Democratic Party of Korea and Yoon Suk-yeol (right) of the main opposition People Power Party (Joint Press Corps)
The Democratic Party’s presidential candidate Lee Jae-myung said South and North Korea had effectively ended the war but the situation was only an armistice in legal terms.
“(The two Koreas) have practically ended the war, but legally, we are in an armistice,” Lee, said at the second presidential candidate TV debate held Friday by the Journalist Association of Korea, when asked by Yoon Suk-yeol of People Power Party on his views about declaring the end of Korean War.
Moon Jae-in administration has been pushing to persuade the US to formally declare the end of the 1950-53 Korean War in a bid to engage North Korea and to resume stalled denuclearization talks. However the deal wouldn’t amount to a peace treaty that would legally end the war.
“It is an armistice, that is why there is an international organization that oversees the armistice,” Lee added.
Yoon refuted, “North Korea keeps firing missiles threateningly. How can this be practical end of war? There is a big difference in point of view (between us) for you to see this situation as an end of war.”
Lee responded, criticizing Yoon for trying to aggravate confrontation.
“I am sorry that candidate Yoon seems to be trying to intensify the conflict, rather than avoiding a war. It is more important to win without a fight. What is more important is to maintain a state of not fighting,” Lee responded.
By Im Eun-byel (firstname.lastname@example.org)