Kritenbrink pledges efforts to strengthen alliance, denuclearize Korean Peninsula

변덕근 / 2021-06-15 23:44:15
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Kritenbrink-Koreas
▲ The image captured from the website of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee shows Daniel Kritenbrink, nominee for assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, delivering opening remarks in a confirmation hearing in Washington on June 15, 2021. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

Kritenbrink-Koreas

Kritenbrink pledges efforts to strengthen alliance, denuclearize Korean Peninsula

By Byun Duk-kun

WASHINGTON, June 15 (Yonhap) -- Daniel Kritenbrink, nominee for U.S. assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, said Tuesday that he would work to strengthen the U.S. alliance with South Korea and other key allies, if confirmed.

The U.S. ambassador to Vietnam also pledged efforts to completely denuclearize the Korean Peninsula through diplomacy.

"Our network of alliances and partnerships is our greatest strategic asset, enabling us to pool our strengths to advance shared interests, deter common threats, and promote universal values – including our commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific that is rules-based and unconstrained by coercion," Kritenbrink said in his opening remarks submitted to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for his confirmation hearing.

"If confirmed, strengthening these relationships will be my top priority. The priority placed on our treaty alliances was demonstrated by President Biden's hosting of his Japanese and Republic of Korea counterparts in April and May," he added.

President Joe Biden hosted his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in, in Washington on May 21, which marked his second in-person meeting with a foreign leader since taking office in January. Biden's first in-person summit was held in April with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.

Kritenbrink said strengthening U.S. alliances will be the first of his six priorities as assistant secretary of state, if confirmed, which also include the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

"President Biden has stated we remain committed to the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and will work with allies to address that threat through diplomacy and deterrence," he told the Senate committee in the hearing.

"If confirmed, I will work to ensure North Korea and others abide by UN Security Council resolutions while supporting a calibrated and practical diplomatic approach that prioritizes the security of the United States, our allies, and our deployed military forces," the nominee added.

(END)

(C) Yonhap News Agency. All Rights Reserved

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