Seoul's foreign minister Kang Kyung-wha and her new U.S. counterpart Antony Blinken agreed that the North Korean nuclear issue is an urgent matter that Seoul and Washington should closely work on.
They discussed the matter a few hours after Blinken officially took office as the Secretary of State on Tuesday.
During his Senate hearing last week, Blinken said that Washington would review its entire approach and policy toward Pyeongyang and come up with strategies through close coordination with its allies.
During their first phone talks, Kang congratulated Blinken, who she says has a deep understanding of the bilateral alliance and Korean Peninsula issues.
Blinken voiced his hope of further tightening Seoul-Washington relations during his term.
The two ministers also vowed to work closely together on global challenges including the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change.
In fact, climate talks between the two countries are already active.
Seoul's new environment minister Han Jeong-ae talked on the phone on Wednesday with John Kerry, the U.S. special presidential climate envoy. The two pledged to cooperate on going carbon neutral.
Following Blinken's inauguration, Jung Pak, a former Central Intelligence Agency official, was nominated as new Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific affairs.
As a North Korean expert, the Korean-American will likely work with matters related to the regime.
Currently, the department's East Asia and Pacific bureau is also led by another Korean-American, Sung Kim, who was named acting assistant secretary last Wednesday.
Kim Dami, Arirang News.