Hagerty Statement Biden’s Meeting with South Korean President Moon

May 21, 2021

NASHVILLE, TN—United States Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and former U.S. Ambassador to Japan, today released the following statement ahead of President Joe Biden’s meeting with South Korea President Moon Jae-in:

“I applaud President Biden’s decision to prioritize the U.S.-ROK Alliance and holding an in-person meeting with South Korean President Moon. The alliance is critical to securing and advancing peace, prosperity, and the rule of law in the Indo-Pacific region. As the former U.S. Ambassador to Japan, I know first-hand the many challenges in this region, not the least of which is North Korea. A strong U.S.-ROK Alliance is an important counter measure to the threats from Pyongyang. Our two countries should continue the strong coordination on North Korea policy that existed during the Trump Administration, and I strongly urge President Biden to avoid a return to a policy of ‘Strategic Patience’—the Obama-era approach of ignoring North Korea as it ratcheted up its offensive missile and nuclear weapons capabilities. A combination of active engagement, maximum pressure, and deterrence is the way to ensure the North Korean regime fulfills its commitment to denuclearize. I also encourage President Biden to seek ways to further involve South Korea in the Quad framework to advance an Indo-Pacific region which is free of coercion and driven by free market principles.”