South Korea this year will be looking to revive the peace process with North Korea.
It's a top priority of the Moon Jae-in administration, which is hoping that there'll be momentum added by the new administration in the United States.
Yoon Jung-min reports.
With the Biden administration beginning its first term in the U.S. this year, Seoul is gearing up to resume the peace process with Pyeongyang and Washington.
Soon after being appointed as Seoul's new foreign minister, Chung Eui-yong who has been President Moon's national security and foreign policy advisor for years hinted that he will focus primarily on reviving the stalled denuclearization talks with North Korea.
"I feel a heavy responsibility because this is a difficult environment when it comes to foreign affairs. I will do my best to wrap up the foreign policies pursued by the Moon administration and help the Korean Peninsula peace process take root."
South Korea's foreign ministry has been running a task force team since January under first vice foreign minister Choi Jong-kun, including the North American Affairs Bureau and the North Korean Nuclear Affairs Bureau.
They have been working to revive the peace process, especially now that President Moon Jae-in has only about a year left in office.
U.S. President Joe Biden has his new foreign policy team ready, led by National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Deputy Secretary Wendy Sherman.
They're currently reviewing policies on North Korea, and are expected to pursue a principled form of diplomacy.
"We are conducting a review of our policy towards North Korea as we speak. President Biden told President Moon last night that that review is underway and that we will consult closely with our allies, particularly the ROK and Japan."
Also on the team are Acting Assistant Secretary Sung Kim, and Deputy Assistant Secretary Jung Pak at the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs.
Under the Obama administration, Sung Kim served as Special Representative for North Korea Policy and in 2018 played a key role in coordinating the Kim-Trump summit in Singapore.
Pak is known to be rather hawkish on North Korea.
She wrote in a piece last month for the Brookings Institution that the Moon administration has squelched opposition to its policy of inter-Korean reconciliation.
Yoon Jung-min, Arirang News.