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Joint Press Statement from the Meeting of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Visegrad Group and the Republic of Korea

The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Visegrad Group (V4) and the Republic of Korea (RoK) met in Bratislava on the 17th of July 2014 at their first ministerial meeting within the new format of V4+RoK cooperation.

The Ministers discussed the perspectives of the V4+RoK cooperation as well as exchanged views on various regional and international issues, developments in the EU and East Asia i.a. Eastern Partnership, energy security, the situation on the Korean Peninsula, Middle East/North Africa region and Afghanistan.

The Ministers recognized the shared universal values and principles, such as democracy, the rule of law, human rights, freedom, and market-based economy and underlined that cooperation between the V4 countries and the RoK constitutes an integral part of, and a tangible added value to, the EU–Republic of Korea Strategic Partnership.

The Ministers acknowledged the common interest of the V4 countries and RoK in promoting development, peace, stability internationally.

The Ministers expressed interest in strengthening of friendly ties between the V4 countries and the RoK, e.g. in the areas of economy, science, education, youth exchange and culture.

The Ministers stressing the commitment of the V4 and the RoK to democracy and the rule of law expressed readiness to pool efforts to facilitate and support the transfer of know-how in socio-economic transformation and democratization to interested beneficiary third countries.

Under this common understanding, the Ministers agreed to initiate a project for sharing the V4 countries' experience of transformation into democracy and market economy, aimed to make positive contribution to the stabilization of the V4 neighborhood and in the process of unification of the Korean Peninsula.

In this context they underlined their willingness to develop cooperation between the V4 countries and the RoK and agreed that concrete areas of this cooperation and its modalities should be determined in the course of expert consultations involving V4 and RoK national institutions and the International Visegrad Fund.

The Ministers welcomed the interest declared by the RoK to support financially the implementation of common V4+RoK cooperation projects.

The Ministers welcomed the idea to organize various kinds of seminars, cultural festivals and youth exchanges between V4 and RoK.

The Ministers also supported the continuation of the V4+RoK dialogue on the level of Political Directors/Deputy Ministers and others, if appropriate, as means of maintaining long-term dialogue on regional and international policy issues.

The Ministers exchanged views on the situation on the Korean Peninsula. They remain deeply concerned about the Democratic Peoples' Republic of Korea (DPRK) nuclear and ballistic missile programmes. They reaffirmed that the verifiable denuclearization of the DPRK is essential for peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula, the wider region and beyond. The Ministers urged the DPRK to comply with all its obligations under the relevant UN Security Council resolutions, its IAEA Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement under the NPT and its commitments under the Six-Party Talks Joint Statement of 19 September 2005. They unanimously agreed that the DPRK must abandon all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear and ballistic missile programmes in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner, which is essential for lasting security, stability and prosperity on the Korean Peninsula. The V4 Group takes a positive note of RoK President's “Trust-building Process on the Korean Peninsula” as well as “Northeast Asia Peace and Cooperation Initiative” for promoting peace and security in the region.

The Ministers expressed their full support for pro-reform course of Ukrainian government and welcome the signature of the remaining provisions of the AA/DCFTA. The ministers call on Ukraine to ratify this document as soon as possible. The Ministers express their grave concern over the recent deterioration of the situation in Ukraine. Current situation undermines the international security posing a new kind of threat in international relations. The ongoing instability in the eastern regions of Ukraine aggravates the situation and does not contribute to lasting political solution of the conflict. The Ministers reaffirmed their full support for sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, including a non-recognition of the annexation of Crimea to Russia.

Bratislava, July 17, 2014

Source: Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic

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