In the following work peculiarities of Inter-Korean relations are analyzed. Main aspects of existing crisis in relations between North Korea and South Korea are outlined and analyzed. Great attention is given to description of North Koreas Nuclear Program. Its main threats are investigated. Reaction of official Seoul to development of this program is given.
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This work analyses peculiarities of policy of the ROK. Prior directions of development of external policy are also taken into account. In the end of the work possible scenarios of the end of nuclear crisis are given. Eastern region of our planet has always been a place of a great interest for different countries. This fact was determined by a number of different reasons.
First of all, this region remained unstable for a long period of its history. Constant civil wars, wars for independence and some inner conflicts drew attention of people to this region. As a result of one of these wars, China lost its influence there. Japan became the owner of this land however, not for a long time. WWII influenced greatly state of affairs in this region.
With the end of the war “Japanese colonial rule also came to an end on the Korean Peninsula” (“Inter-Korean Relations” para.1). However, it did not become a unitary state. The USA and the USSR “agreed to a temporary division of the Korean Peninsula at the 38th parallel until a provisional government could be established and independence restored” (“An Overview of Inter-Korean Relations” para. 4).
Unfortunately, it was not a temporary decision as it was supposed. Brutal Korean war destroyed any chances for reunion of the state. There were no contacts between governments of the Republic of Korea (ROK) and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) after this war. However, some positive shift happened under the President Roh Tae-Woo.
The states renewed negotiations. This positive tendency continued and there was a period of gradual positive change in relations between two states. Election of Lee Myung Bak as the President announced new approach to Inter-Korean relations which was called pragmatic (“An Overview of Inter-Korean Relations” para. 7). This approach led to deterioration of relations between South and North Koreas.
The skirmish between battleships of these countries only worsened the state of affairs. New President Park Geun Hye promised to improve diplomatic and economic relations with North Korea. However, there is still tension between these two states. North Korean Nuclear crisis promotes further development of this tension. The main point is, that this state has its own nuclear weapons program which is a major concern for the whole world (Sigal para. 3).
“In 2006, 2009 and again in 2013, North Korea announced that it had conducted successful nuclear tests – they all came after the North was sanctioned by the UN for launching rockets” (“How advanced is North Korea’s nuclear programme?” para. 1). With this in mind, it is possible to speak about the Nuclear crisis. Government of this state refuses to abandon this program. Negotiations with the participation of the USA, Russian Federation, China and some other countries were not successful.
Pyongyang refuses to show all materials connected with this question. Moreover, there is no guaranty that it will stop development of this program. It is quite obvious that nuclear threat is used by North Korea as a bargaining chip in order to get some benefits. However, possibility of its existence and usage should not be ignored.
That is why leading countries are worried and try to solve this problem, hoping to avoid new war in this region, which can be even more brutal and catastrophic than the previous one. Taking Nuclear Program of North Korea into account, official Seoul should have special policy in order to react to all threats, created by Pyongyang. Moreover, this policy should try to improve relations between two countries in order to obtain some benefits.
That is why the President should be a strong leader and accept some hard decisions. “Park has already advocated a stronger South Korean military contribution to the U.S.–South Korea alliance, particularly in response to recent North Korean attacks and provocations” (Klingner para. 7). These actions were influenced by great aggression in North Koreas statements.
The DPRK says about the possibility of nuclear attacks on South Korea, Japan, the USA. That is why international community is disturbed by these proclamations. South Korea should do something with respect to these facts as it is the first to suffer from North Koreas aggression. Nowadays, it seems that there is no possible peaceful solution to this problem.
The President of Korea, Park Geun Hye, tries to guarantee security of her state. Her first step is connected with the foreign policy of the country. It is an attempt to obtain a powerful ally in a probable war with North Korea. Diplomatic relations between the USA and the ROK are now as stable and close as they have never been before. The USA acts as a guarantor of South Koreas security. The President tries to obtain more support from the USA.
Troop coordination of these states moved to a new level. Military presence of the USA in the region increased significantly. Preparing for some military conflict, Park Geun Hye also does not forget about possible diplomatic solutions to this situation. It is very difficult to solve this problem under existing conditions. Cooperation of South Korea with the USA irritates Pyongyang.
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That is why North Korea refuses to hold a parley with Seoul. That is why peaceful decision of this problem seems to be more and more complicated. However, the ROK preserves its attempts to establish normal relations between these two counties. Within a framework of this policy, South Korea tries to ignore all provocations and military acts which North Korea performs.
The ROK even tries to continue its humanitarian mission, trying to help some vulnerable groups which exist among population of North Korea. The main aim of these measures is to show peaceful character of South Korea and its intentions. However, there are also some firm actions. The May 24 Measures are still observed. Administration of the President of South Korea tries to find some new steps which will be able to improve existing situation.
However, there is also a clear message to North Korea. It states that though the ROK is not interested in war and further escalation of violence, it is ready for any possible development of the situation and will be able to answer to military aggression. Having understood North Koreas main motives in development of its nuclear program, it is possible to cogitate about potential solutions to this problem.
It became clear that official Pyongyang is not going to stop development of its nuclear program. The situation is getting worse day by day whether it is the nation’s nuclear program, advances in missile technology, cyber warfare operations or its horrible human rights record (Soesanto para. 2).
This fact influences greatly further development of the situation. It should be said that this program is taken as a real threat to existing world order, that is why it becomes not only the problem of South Korea. Historically, Russia, China, the USA and Japan were the most active participants of main events which happened at Korea Peninsular and now they try to find solution to this problem.
On the current stage these countries try to use diplomatic means, hoping to find compromise. There is a great number of different guaranties which these countries give. In the first instance, it is connected with safety and security arrangements. Leading countries are ready to become guarantors of North Koreas security if it closes its Nuclear Program. However, negotiations are not very successful.
Being not sure in its own forces and having no trust to these countries, North Korea does not give any distinct answer. Moreover, there is still a question whether it really has nuclear program and weapon. That is why all negotiation parties are very careful in their suggestions. It should also be admitted that Nuclear Program has a very strong ideological influence and meaning.
For years Pyongyang has been stressing necessity of conquering South Korea and unification of the country. Having obtained the remedy for realization of their main purposes, North Korea has no chance to destroy it as it would mean renunciation of official ideology. Having analyzed the data, it is possible to suggest some believable scenarios of further development of actions. The first scenario provides peaceful decision of existing problem.
North Korea can close its Nuclear Program in exchange for security safeguards and help in economic development of the country as current state of affairs is very complicated. Relations with South Korea will also improve and provide better development of the economy of the state.
However, there is one more possible scenario which is not so peaceful. Failed to find compromise, leading states could just decide to solve this problem in a heavy handed way. In this case, possibility of the world war exists. That is why it is very important to find peaceful solution which will satisfy all litigants.
An Overview of Inter-Korean Relations. Web.
Inter-Korean Relations. Web.
“How advanced is North Korea’s nuclear programme?“. The BBC News. 2014. Web.
Klingner, Bruce. The U.S. Should Support New South Korean President’s Approach to North Korea. 2013. Web.
Sigal, Leon. The North Korean Nuclear Crisis: Understanding The Failure of the ‘Crime-and-Punishment’ Strategy. 1997. Web.
Soesanto, Stefan. “The North Korea threat“. The Hill. 2013. Web.