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Russia’s Policy towards the Korean Peninsula at the close of XX : beginning of XXI centuries

  • The Journal of Northeast Asia Research
  • Abbr : NEA
  • 2014, 29(2), pp.351-382
  • DOI : 10.18013/jnar.2014.29.2.012
  • Publisher : The Institute for Northeast Asia Research
  • Research Area : Social Science > Political Science > International Politics > International Relations / Cooperation

Vorontsov A. V. 1

1러시아과학원 동방학연구소

Candidate

ABSTRACT

Russia’s pragmatic and calculating approach towards the Republic of Korea and the DPRK as well as towards the Korean Peninsula in general is an integral part of the strategic course and reflects its fundamental interests and constant goal during at least last 60 years. Beginning from 1991 Moscow regards both Korean states as partners. Their relationships have independent value to Moscow and rest on principles of good neighborly interaction and cooperation. Moscow enjoys mature multilateral comprehensive cooperation with Seoul. Suffice it to underline the achieved level of bilateral trade volume of $ 32,5 billion, amount of South Korea investments about $ 2,6 billion in 2013 and two countries citizens visa-free travel status. Russia maintains a firm and genuine stand in favor of nuclear-free status of the Korean Peninsula and proceeds from understanding that the North Korean possession of nuclear weapons stands in fundamental contradiction to its national security interests as well as goals of sustaining the global nonproliferation regime. At the same time, Russia’s first priority is and will be the goal of maintaining peace, security, and stability on the Korean peninsula. Moscow believes that due to sharing a common border with North Korea, any Korean armed conflict will unavoidably inflict heavy damage to the military-and-political, economic, environmental, humanitarian, demographic, etc. security of Russia. In this way, in a hypothetical situation whereupon Russian leadership was facing a dilemma whether to support military action against North Korea aimed at elimination of its nuclear weapons or act towards preserving peace on the Korean peninsula, Moscow will opt for the second path. In other words, Russia is firmly committed to the nuclear disarmament of North Korea but exclusively by peaceful diplomatic means. Russia’s approach towards the Korea reunification perspective can be described by the same characteristics -Moscow strongly support Korea people will and aspiration aimed at the unification but only on the peaceful and voluntary basis.

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