NATO military delegation at staff talks with Partner, Republic of Korea

  • 13 Feb. 2023 - 14 Feb. 2023
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  • Last updated: 17 Feb. 2023 08:45

On 13 and 14 February 2023, a military delegation from NATO’s Cooperative Security Division (CS), led by its Director, Lieutenant General Francesco Diella travelled to Seoul to meet with military representatives from the Republic of Korea. They discussed the current partnership between NATO and Korea as well as future opportunities for cooperation.

The two-day visit was an opportunity to confirm NATO’s ongoing commitment to its partnership with the Republic of Korea, which was established in 2005 and encompasses cooperation on a range of issues, including cyber security, technology and capability development, arms control and non-proliferation, maritime security, and counter-terrorism.

Addressing the Korean delegation, Lieutenant General Diella, Director CS presented NATO’s new Strategic Concept and highlighted the importance of cooperation with like-minded Partners. “NATO and Korea are strong partners. For over 15 years, we have been working together on matters of common importance. Working with like-minded partners has become even more important as transatlantic and Indo-Pacific security are deeply interconnected. What happens in Europe matters to the Indo-Pacific, and what happens in the Indo-Pacific matters to NATO”, underlined Lieutenant General Diella. The NATO representatives then shared some insights into current initiatives being led by their division.

Welcoming the NATO delegation, Major General Su-Kwang Kim, Director of the Strategy and Plans Division of the Republic of Korea Joint Chiefs of Staff highlighted the importance of this Partnership to his nation. He proceeded by providing a brief on the structure of the Korean Armed Forces, the current security environment, and the Korean Strategic Concept.

The second session of the military staff talks focused on areas for future cooperation, which included the work on the Individually Tailored Partnership Programme for the Republic of Korea, as well as areas of practical cooperation, such as participation in NATO exercises.“Korea is one of NATO’s closest Partners, especially in the Cyber domain. You have been participating in the NATO Centre of Excellence on cyber security in Tallinn, and in November 2022, your experts took part in the NATO Cyber Coalition exercise. This contributes to interoperability and to sharing knowledge and best practices”, emphasised Lieutenant General Diella.

On the second day of the talks, the delegations visited the Korean Army headquarters in Gyeryongdae and met with General Park Jeong-hwan, Chief of Staff of the Republic of Korea Army. On site, the delegations discussed the participation of Korean Army troops in NATO exercises. The staff talks concluded with a tour of the Joint Security Area.