Security Experts to Discuss Regional Challenges at Seoul Meet

  • By Choi Hyung-seok

    May 14, 2018 12:46

    A debate in Seoul on Tuesday brings together global security experts to discuss the North Korean nuclear issue and other regional challenges.

    The debate is held on the sidelines of the 9th Asian Leadership Conference hosted by the Chosun Ilbo at the Walkerhill Hotel in Seoul on Wednesday and Thursday under the theme, "Globalization in Crisis: Navigating the World with New Opportunities."

    Under Chatham House rules, the doors of debates remain firmly shut, and nothing will be recorded to ensure that participants can exchange opinions freely.

    Participants are veteran officials who have been involved in security and diplomatic affairs on the Korean Peninsula for decades. They include heavyweights from the conservative Heritage Foundation and Atlantic Council, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and the Brookings Institution.

    What is certain is that the debate will be chaired by Victor Cha, the Korea chair at the CSIS. The morning session will focus on the prospects of the U.S.-North Korea summit and North Korean denuclearization, while the afternoon session will involve political affairs in Northeast Asia.

    Cha was the Asia chief at the National Security Council during the George W. Bush administration and is now a prolific commentator. He recently fell foul of U.S. President Donald Trump and was bumped off the post of ambassador to Seoul at the 11th hour.

    Other participants include Joseph Yun, a former special representative for North Korea policy at the U.S. State Department, and Evans Revere of the Brookings Institution, another ex-State Department official.

    Bruce Klingner at the Heritage Institution, Sue Mi Terry at CSIS and Jung Pak at the Brookings Institution will also take part. Both used to spy on North Korea for the CIA.

    On Wednesday, the Asian Leadership Conference kicks off at the same hotel with around 20 nuclear experts among 200 speakers who will take part in some 80 individual sessions.

    About two dozen young innovators will also take part in a special session on blockchain technology. They include Patrick Dai, founder of Qtum, the world's second-largest virtual currency operating platform, who will deliver a keynote speech along with French lawmaker Joachim Son-Forget and Chin Dae-je, former minister of information and communication, and head of the Korea Blockchain Association.

    Markus Gnirck, co-founder and CEO of Singapore-based tryb Group, will speak about investing in virtual currency and blockchain technology companies.

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