Go To Contents
News & Events
  • left_bnr_ap.gif

News Releases

Title 129th IFES International Scholars Invitational Seminar
Date 2019.02.27
Type [News]
Event: 129th IFES International Scholars Invitational Seminar
Date: February 22, 2019, 2-4pm
Speaker: Joel Wit, Senior Fellow with the Stimson Center and the Director of 38 North

IFES, Kyungnam University (Director Kwan Sei Lee) hosted the 129th IFES International Scholars Invitational Seminar on February 22, 2019 with Joel Wit as a speaker. Mr. Wit is a prominent US expert on the Korean Peninsula and currently the Senior Fellow with the Stimson Center and the Director of 38 North.

At the seminar, Mr. Wit shared his opinion regarding the second US-DPRK summit scheduled to be held next week, saying that there must be a dispute settlement mechanism included in the summit agreement as conflicts could arise between the two sides during the process of holding up the terms agreed upon.

Wit also identified some possible issues that may occur during the process of upholding the terms agreed upon during the summit: How to dismantle North Korea’s nuclear weapons facilities and how to pay for it, the verification of dismantlement and the inspection of sites, and mutual agreement for implementation.

He mentioned a few issues which could be discussed at the summit and are as follows: the disablement of nuclear testing facilities and the Tongchang-ri missile testing facility and subsequent US inspections, the postponement and easing of US sanctions on North Korea, and the establishment of liaison offices between North Korea and the United States. He also said that a phased roadmap that includes these items could be agreed upon.

At the same time, he emphasized that even if North Korea and the United States cannot agree upon a roadmap, it will not be the end of the process that has taken place so far and that, “Even if the two parties cannot reach these objectives, we need an approach that acknowledges that the situation now is clearly better than the one before the first US-DPRK summit.”

Wit also stressed that, after examining the process that has taken place since the first North Korea-United States summit until now, the current situation has improved, the national interests of both the United States and South Korea have been advanced, the ability of the United States to defend itself against North Korea has not been diminished, and it is important to ensure that these positive developments be maintained. 

Joel Wit has worked as a U.S. State Department official and helped negotiate the 1994 US-DPRK Agreed Framework. He has also worked as a Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and Senior Fellow at the U.S.-Korea Institute at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies among other positions.