U.S. and China Nuclear Envoys Address North Korea’s Actions and Russia Alliance in Video ConferenceSouth Korean Foreign Minister Engages with G7 Diplomats and Discusses AI Ethics at UNESCO Meeting in Brazil

WASHINGTON — In a significant diplomatic engagement, the United States and China's top nuclear envoys convened via video conference to deliberate on North Korea's troubling activities and its burgeoning military ties with Russia, as announced by the State Department on Friday. The virtual meeting, which took place on Wednesday, featured U.S. Senior Official for North Korea Jung Pak and her Chinese counterpart, Liu Xiaoming, against a backdrop of escalating concerns regarding Pyongyang's continuous weapons testing and aggressive stance towards South Korea.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the discussions focused on North Korea's "increasingly destabilizing and escalatory" conduct. There is an apprehension that Pyongyang may resort to significant provocations in the lead-up to the parliamentary elections in South Korea this April and the U.S. presidential election in November. The talks underscored the critical need for maintaining peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula, emphasizing the return to dialogue and diplomacy. Additionally, the envoys examined the expanding military collaboration between Russia and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), which contravenes numerous United Nations Security Council resolutions.

During the discussions, Pak highlighted the imperative for all U.N. member states to adhere to their obligations under the U.N. sanctions regime against North Korea, ensuring full implementation. The meeting reflects the international community's ongoing efforts to address the complexities of North Korea's actions and its implications for regional and global security.

Seoul — South Korean Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yul engaged in a series of high-level discussions with international counterparts, including Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu, focusing on bilateral relations and cooperation in the realm of artificial intelligence ethics. These meetings occurred on the sidelines of the G20 foreign ministers' meeting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, this week.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the encounter between Cho and Ma took place while Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi was on a European tour. The discussions underscored the significance of maintaining robust South Korea-China relations and continuous dialogue despite existing issues.

In addition to the bilateral meeting with China, Cho met with top diplomats from all G7 countries, participating in both a trilateral meeting with counterparts from the United States and Japan and bilateral talks with officials from Canada, Japan, and Italy. He also engaged in informal discussions with diplomats from France and Germany and attended a dinner with Britain's top diplomat.

A key highlight of Cho's visit was his meeting with UNESCO's chief, where they explored avenues to enhance cooperation in the ethics of artificial intelligence. Cho highlighted the alignment between UNESCO's recommendation for a global standard-setting instrument for AI's ethical use and Seoul's initiative to host a global AI safety summit in May.

UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay expressed appreciation for Seoul's support of the organization's initiatives in Africa, including vocational training programs. She also conveyed her anticipation for the successful conduct of the inaugural South Korea-Africa summit, scheduled for June in South Korea, and the potential for expanded cooperation between UNESCO and South Korea.

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