SKorea’s new leader offers support if N Korea denuclearizes

Kim Jin-ah/Newsis via AP
South Korean President-elect Yoon Suk Yeol, second from left, and South Korean President Moon Jae-in, second fro right, talk before their meeting at the presidential Blue House in Seoul, South Korea on March 8, 2022.

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korea’s new president says he’ll present “an audacious plan” to improve North Korea’s economy if it denuclearizes.

Yoon Suk Yeol made the offer during a speech at his inauguration ceremony in Seoul on Tuesday.

Yoon says the door to dialogue will be open to resolve North Korean nuclear threats. He says his government will be ready to work with the international community to present “an audacious plan” that will significantly strengthen North Korea’s economy and improve its citizens’ livelihoods.

Yoon, who has previously vowed a tougher stance on North Korea, appears to have avoided tough words amid concerns North Korea is preparing for a nuclear test. But it was unclear if North Korea would accept his overture as the North has previously rejected similar offers to provide incentives linked to progress in its denuclearization.