President Moon Jae-in ended his 5-day visit to the U.S. with a packed schedule Thursday including a keynote speech at the UN General Assembly, a summit with the U.S., and a trilateral summit including Japan.
Moon stressed the need for "peace" in his UN speech while promoting the Korean economy and the PyeongChang Winter Olympics during bilateral talks with world leaders.
At the UN, he stressed "global cooperation for maximum pressure and sanctions on North Korea" as Seoul's stance on the nuclear crisis. He said efforts should be made to prevent war and maintain peace, and called for the nuclear situation to be managed steadily to prevent the escalation of tensions.
During his 22-minute speech, he mentioned the word peace 32 times. He also said the spirit of the United Nations that aims for global peace through multilateral dialogue is most urgently required on the Korean Peninsula at the moment.
Moon’s remarks are interpreted as a vision of establishing a new multilateral framework based on the existing six-party talks combined with UN mediation. He is believed to have called for a multilateral solution to the nuclear crisis at the UN level.
During summit talks with U.S. President Donald Trump, the two sides agreed to maintain and strengthen steadfast bilateral defense readiness through South Korea's purchase and development of high-tech military assets.
They also agreed to expand the rotational deployment of US strategic assets to Korea and the surrounding region. This is based on the shared view that it's imperative to maintain overwhelming military superiority over North Korea.
Moon and Trump also denounced in the strongest terms Pyongyang's continued provocations.
During a trilateral luncheon also including Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Trump announced a new administrative order targeting individuals, companies and financial institutions that facilitate or finance trade with North Korea. Seoul and Tokyo supported the new sanction.
However, the allies reiterated that sanctions and pressure are aiming for a peaceful resolution of the North Korea issue through dialogue.
Earlier, President Moon also met with UN Secretary-General António Guterres and asked for the UN's mediation of dialogue with Pyongyang.
Moon also promoted the PyeongChang Winter Olympics during an event at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and sought to defuse jitters regarding the North Korea risk while meeting with U.S. businesspeople.