The two envoys affected the success of the Trump – Kim summit
Stephen Biegun and Kim Hyok-chol are experienced negotiators, playing an important role in the process of preparing the conference.
Korean special envoy to the US Kim Hyok-chol yesterday boarded a plane to Hanoi after a stop in Beijing, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported. The US State Department also confirmed that the US envoy to North Korea, Stephen Biegun, began his business trip to Hanoi.
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The two senior US officials will meet in Hanoi to discuss details related to the second summit between US President Donald Trump and Korean leader Kim Jong-un, scheduled to take place. February 27-28. According to Korea’s Hankyoreh daily, these are two names that contribute significantly to the success of the upcoming Trump – Kim summit because they play a leading role in the pre-event negotiations between the two.
Kim Hyok-chol recently accepted the role of special envoy to the US from North Korean Deputy Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui earlier this month. He was a Korean ambassador to Spain, Ethiopia, Sudan and some other countries.
South Korean government sources said Kim Hyok-chol is currently a member of the Korean State Affairs Committee and has long been considered a senior diplomat.
Kim previously worked at the 9th Department, which is responsible for overseeing the development of diplomatic strategy of Tran Tien. He quickly advanced thanks to Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho’s trust.
In January, Kim Hyok-chol accompanied Kim Yong-chol, a former Korean intelligence boss, “right-hand man” of leader Kim Jong-un, during his visit to the United States. Kim Yong-chol personally introduced to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that Kim Hyok-chol will be the main negotiator with the US special envoy Stephen Biegun.
Kim Hyok-chol was also a key voice to actively participate in the six-party talks with South Korea, China, Japan, Russia and the US on the issue of non-nuclearization of the Korean peninsula in the 2000s. .
“Kim understands nuclear issues, is experienced and works very hard,” a diplomatic source once worked with Kim Hyok-chok during his time as ambassador to Spain.
“He fluently used English and mastered all the terms related to the Korean nuclear issue, and was not hesitant to talk about the range of the main missiles in the Korean arsenal, including intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM), “the source said. “If someone says that ‘Korea should stop aggression and become a normal country,’ Kim will respond immediately, stating the reason for North Korea’s nuclear program development.”
On the US side, Stephen Biegun was appointed by President Trump to be a special envoy to negotiate with Korea from August last year. Previously, he held the position of vice president of international government affairs at Ford Motor, overseeing all aspects of the company’s relationship with the governments of the country, including trade strategy and beating. Political risk prices.
From 2001 to 2003, he worked at the White House as executive secretary of the US National Security Council. He was also a senior member of Condoleezza Rice’s National Security Advisory team.
Biegun was recognized as a politically experienced negotiator when he spent 14 years as a foreign policy advisor to both the US House and Senate.
In 1999-2000, Biegun served as chief of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In 1994-1998, he served as an advisor to the Commission on European matters.
In addition, Biegun has 6 years working at the Foreign Relations Committee of the House, in charge of foreign support, trade policies and European issues.
Neither Kim nor Biegun have ever taken on the responsibility of leading US-Korean talks. The choice of two participants to discuss the summit organization seems to be a way for leaders of the two countries to express their desire to change, to break the confrontation that has persisted over the past seven decades. Lee Je-hun pen from Hankyoreh comment.
On the other hand, both Kim Hyok-chol and Biegun have met the leader of the other country and affirmed their commitment and vision. This will help them avoid suspicions and misunderstand each other during the negotiation and evaluation process.
Kim Hyok-chol met President Trump on January 18, while Biegun was present at the meeting between Foreign Minister Pompeo and leader Kim Jong-un during his visit to Korea last October.