The Republic of Korea hosted a raucous summit Saturday afternoon with the DPRK, China, Russia, and the U.S. to ease tensions in the Korean peninsula. North Korean leader Kim Jong un and President Donald Trump appeared to offer their cabinet representatives guidance.
Overall, South Korea used the summit as an opportunity to introduce their so-called Moonshine Policy to fix the Korean relationship moving forward. Named for the 1998 Sunshine Policy in regards to the two Koreas, Moonshine seeks to offer aid, trade and education to the DPRK.
“[Moonshine] is an attempt to reach out to the DPRK diplomatically and through humanitarian programs,” the UN Ambassador from South Korea said. “It is the guiding principle of our resolution, which will guarantee lasting peace in Korea.”
A comprehensive aid package to North Korea encompasses a variety of areas. Medical assistance will be offered to civilians, particularly young children and the disabled. There will also be an effort to provide mental healthcare in North Korea.
As a part of Moonshine, South Korea places a large emphasis on the development of agriculture to address hunger in North Korea. The new Agricultural Educational Program will utilize surplus supplies of rice and send them north, where South Korean farming advisors will help North Korea increase their crop yields. The policy aims to sufficiently address hunger within five years, and will implement a new system to efficiently deliver monetary and material aid. South Korea aims to be transparent on all aid in the future.
Additionally, under the plan, North and South Korea will engage in new, limited bilateral trade. Sea trading routes will be established to two ports in North Korea, and the South Korean Navy will secure them.
The main opponent of the Moonshine Policy is South Korea’s ally, the U.S. The entourage of U.S. officials touted their opposition at the summit, instead stating the importance of stemming North Korea’s power.
“Right now, our biggest focus is denuclearization; we're surprised that it isn’t an issue for other nations,” Chief of Staff John Kelly said. “Denuclearization is a pertinent topic to address because actions by the DPRK directly involve the U.S. We must halt nuclear weapons development, delcare uranium enrichment sites to the IAEA, and allow the IAEA to inspect these sites.”
President Trump added that “This deal is a loser deal, a lightweight deal, and we will not stand by while [Kim Jong Un] fills the world with rockets and death. Without denuclearization, this plan is nothing.”
The North Korean leader responded on behalf of his nation, stating that “we are a player at the table now, and we are here to stay forever. We’re fed up with western imperialism and we have a right to possess nuclear weapons, just like the other powers here.”
China and Russia largely concurred with the Moonshine Policy, approving of the Korea-centered approach that aims to ensure “peninstability.”