South Korea’s new president, Yoon Suk Yeol has promised an audacious plan to rebuild North Korea’s economy if Pyongyang denuclearises.
Yoon had accused North Korea of endangering security in the region and beyond with its nuclear programme in comments as he was sworn-in on Tuesday.
However, he said “the door to dialogue will remain open so that we can peacefully resolve this threat.”
Yoon, however, did not elaborate on what the plan for the reclusive neighbour nation could look like, but said it would be developed in cooperation with international partners.
“If North Korea genuinely embarks on a process to complete denuclearisation, we are prepared to work with the international community to present an audacious plan that will vastly strengthen North Korea’s economy and improve the quality of life for its people,’’ he said.
The 61-year-old former attorney-general took his oath of office in front of thousands of people in a celebratory ceremony in front of parliament in Seoul.
Yoon, a conservative, won the presidential election on March 9, by a razor-thin margin, against the left-liberal candidate of the ruling Democratic Party, Lee Jae Myung.
Meanwhile,Yoon will serve a five-year term and succeeds Moon Jae In, who also took part in the swearing-in ceremony.
Yoon’s time in office came during uncertain times for the region.
This year North Korea has repeatedly tested missiles capable of carrying a nuclear warhead, including an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
South Korea and the United States fear the internationally isolated North Korea is currently preparing a nuclear test.
U.S. President Joe Biden is due to visit Japan and South Korea in about two weeks’ time.