see the big picture
|▲ President Seok-Yeol Yoon and President Joe Biden of the United States are asked a question during a joint press conference between the leaders of the Republic of Korea and the United States held at the auditorium of the Presidential Office in Yongsan, Seoul, on the 21st. 2022.5.21|
|ⓒ Yonhap News||
View related photos
At a joint press conference held after the summit meeting with U.S. President Joe Biden on the 21st, President Yoon Seok-yeol pointed out that the first cabinet of the Yun government was composed of ‘male bias’ and asked a question asking what kind of effort he would make for gender equality in the future. received. It was the last question of the press conference of the day.
The questioner was a Korean-born reporter from the Washington Post, which was covering President Biden with him. He suddenly asked a question to President Yoon when the Korean host, who held the press conference that day, was about to announce the end of the press conference by saying, “This is a joint press conference…” after only two reporters from each country were asked questions.
The WP reporter said, “(In the Yoon Seok-yeol government’s cabinet), there are very few men. There are more men than women.” “During the last presidential election, President Yoon said that he would try to achieve gender equality. What do you think you can do to promote women’s representation in the same place?” Also, he asked again, “What kind of work is (President Yoon) planning to do to achieve equality between men and women?”
In response, President Yoon said, “In the current public service society, for example, if you were a minister of the cabinet, many women did not come up to the previous position. Because it wasn’t,” he explained.
Then, President Yoon promised, “That’s why I plan to more actively guarantee these opportunities (to women).”
As pointed out by the WP reporter, the current Yoon Seok-yeol government’s cabinet has a relatively high percentage of Seoul National University, men, and people in their 50s and 60s compared to the previous administration. Among the 19 members of the State Council, including the new Prime Minister Han Deok-soo, who received the letter of appointment on that day, only one woman is Minister of Gender Equality and Family Kim Hyun-sook. Among the 41 deputy ministers and deputy ministers below, only two are women.
“It should be treated on the same line as economic security, national security and military security.”
The joint press conference between President Yoon Seok-yeol and President Biden on that day was held in the form of a question-and-answer session between the South Korean and American leaders, as previously announced by the presidential office.
After both presidents’ speeches were over, the moderator asked reporters to ask questions, saying, “The presidents of both countries will directly point out reporters to ask questions, but the Korean reporter will ask the Korean president first.”
The first questioner was a question from a Korean reporter. President Yoon’s explanation of the concept of ‘economic security’ and ‘how the Korean economy can benefit from an economic and security alliance with the United States, specifically, what effects can be experienced by individual citizens’ asked.
President Yoon said, “Economic security, as you have probably experienced through the press, for example, system semiconductors used to make automobiles, which are necessary for the lives of our people or important industrial products, for example, and we have also been exposed to the urea water crisis a while ago. It is something that must be dealt with in the same line with national security and military security, because ensuring the stability of the supply chain of such materials necessary for living and industrial production is a problem directly connected to the lives and economy of the people,” he explained.
He added, “In the past, the world maintained a free and universal trade order with the WTO (International Trade Organization) system, but there are always risks in the supply chain due to Corona and various blockages.” President Yoon said, “So, to stabilize the supply chain, and especially since Korea and the United States are countries that share the values of democracy and human rights, economic security issues should be addressed by the NSC (National “We decided to designate a department in charge of the Security Council to continue discussing this issue, and to create a framework for economic and security cooperation that helps each other in times of difficulty,” he said.
In addition, President Yoon said, “In case of any impact on the foreign exchange market in the case of the financial market, mutual consultations are also held on the issue of mutual help between the two countries, and the export issue of the defense industry, which is closely related to the economy as well as military security. As we started, we decided to create a cooperative framework for security and industry together,” he said. did.
He added, “Even in countries that do not share the universal value of democracy, such as freedom and human rights, like Korea and the United States, we do not necessarily exclude them from the perspective of world peace, but we expect them to fall into the rules of universal values, It is decided to first build close ties with countries that share the same.”
The next question was from an American reporter. President Biden pointed out an American reporter, who, contrary to the request of the Korean host, raised a question, saying, “I will ask President Yoon first.”
He told President Yoon, “There was talk of security in the joint statement, but there was no talk about nuclear bombers or submarines like this.
And to President Biden, “Didn’t you talk about the prerequisites for meeting with North Korea in the joint statement?” “You didn’t talk about the provision of vaccines to North Korea. Are there any prerequisites in this regard? “I think there will be voices demanding that we rejoin the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) before going to the Japanese meeting, but the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) may eventually become a slightly more trade deal. Do you think there will be?” he asked.
President Biden replied, “Can I tell you first?” “First, we are ready to provide a vaccine to the question of whether we will provide a vaccine to North Korea, and to the question of whether we are ready to meet,” he said. He added, “It’s the same with China, and we’re ready to do it. We can do it immediately, but we haven’t received an answer,” he added. .
In response to additional questions, President Biden said, “In the case of the IPEF we are talking about now, this is a very important part. What I am talking about here is an economic strategy, as I said.” And we are talking about a supply chain that encompasses a wide variety of products, not just the core supply chain or semiconductors.” Then he said, “It can be said that even these parts that can affect international practices are included in this agreement.
In response to a question related to ‘extended deterrence’, President Yoon said, “I and President Biden share a serious concern about the ever-evolving nuclear and missile threat from North Korea, and we agree on the need to prioritize these issues above any other issue. did,” he said. “President Biden reaffirmed an effective expansion deterrence strategy, and specifically, initiating consultations to expand and strengthen joint training, which is the core of the ROK-U.S. combined defense posture, and, if necessary, timely dispatch of strategic assets to the United States.” We decided to continue to check additional measures while coordinating.”
“We also decided to strengthen cooperation on North Korea’s cyber threats and asymmetric capabilities such as cyber threats,” he said. said.
After President Yoon’s answer was finished, the moderator asked the reporters, “I’m taking turns doing this for a Korean reporter and an American reporter, but this time I’ll take another question from a Korean reporter again.”
A South Korean reporter who was pointed out by President Yoon said, “Before the summit, the president’s office said, “I will show you an effective action plan related to extended deterrence in order to respond to the increasingly sophisticated North Korean nuclear threat at this meeting.” “Specifically, what kind of discussion was held today as an action plan, what kind of discussion was there, and did the two of you agree a lot in the process of discussion?”
President Yoon said, “In the past, we thought that expansion and deterrence would only be talking about a nuclear umbrella, but we also discussed the timely deployment of various strategic assets, including fighters and missiles, which the US reporter asked about earlier. In the future, we have decided to continue to hold more specific discussions between the NSCs of the two countries,” he said. He added, “As I just answered the question of the reporter from the United States, there was also a discussion about whether joint exercises between the two countries in preparation for such a nuclear attack would also be necessary in various ways.”
President Biden says ‘I can only ask one question’
After the answer was over, the moderator said, “This is the time for American reporters to ask questions to the President of the United States again, but if you raise your hand, I think it will be the last question.”
An American reporter nominated by President Biden said, “I came here (Korea) to promote economic cooperation between Korea and the United States, and there have been several (international) relations that have deteriorated recently. What role do you want to play to solve the problem?” he asked the presidents of both countries.
President Biden did not immediately answer, but remarked to an American reporter, saying, “You can only ask one question for now,” seemingly criticizing the Korean host for limiting reporters’ questions. At this time, the people at the press conference burst into laughter, and President Yun, who was beside him, watched the situation expressionlessly.
After a while, President Biden said, “I am speaking to protect President Yoon, and my answer is this.” “We were discussing various things in a general sense now. We will be on a tour, and we will discuss something similar there.”
He continued, “The important thing here is that the very close triangular economic and military relations between Korea, the US and Japan are also established. There was a problem, but now I’m looking at that part well.”
After that, President Biden said, “In fact, a lot has changed. First of all, democracy in the Pacific region requires closer cooperation than ever before, and close cooperation is required not only in the military but also in the economic aspect.” So, together with President Yoon, we talked about the need to expand this not only to the United States, Japan, and Korea, but also to other Pacific South Islands and the Indo-Pacific region in the region.”
He added, “(Economic cooperation between countries) becomes a global problem, not a regional problem, and a global response is required. For that, we have no choice but to rely on the alliance.” “There is widespread support, and all of this will determine whether we can promote democracy as sustainable,” he concluded.