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(LEAD) Unification minister meets German president, discusses N.K. denuclearization, unification

15:04 October 05, 2022

(ATTN: UPDATES with more details in last 2 paras; CHANGES dateline, photo)

BERLIN/SEOUL, Oct. 4 (Yonhap) -- German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier expressed "full support" for South Korea's "audacious initiative" designed to help North Korea improve its economy in return for denuclearization steps, Seoul unification minister said Tuesday following a bilateral meeting.

Kwon Young-se, South Korea's top point man on North Korea, paid a courtesy call on Steinmeier during his four-day trip to Germany to commemorate the 32nd anniversary of Berlin's unification.

"We mostly discussed in depth pending issues on the Korean Peninsula," Kwon told reporters after the meeting. "President Steinmeier said Germany fully supports South Korea's policy on North Korea, especially the 'audacious initiative.'"

Kwon voiced concerns over Pyongyang's latest missile provocations, including a recent barrage of short-range and intermediate-range ballistic missile launches, but reaffirmed his commitment to a push for inter-Korean exchanges and humanitarian cooperation.

Steinmeier showed his "grave" interest in security situations on the Korean Peninsula and expressed his full support for the South Korean government's sincere efforts to push for North Korea's denuclearization and ease tensions on the peninsula, according to Seoul's unification ministry.

The ministry also said it will make efforts to communicate with the international community to secure more support for its policies on inter-Korean ties and unification.

This photo, provided by South Korea's unification ministry, shows Unification Minister Kwon Young-se (L) paying a courtesy call on German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier during his visit to Berlin on Oct. 4, 2022. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)


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