S. Korea expands consultations with neighbors on N. Korea
SEOUL, March 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's chief nuclear envoy will visit Russia next week to discuss the aftermath of an unsuccessful summit between North Korea and the United States in Hanoi, Seoul's foreign ministry said Thursday.
The trip by Lee Do-hoon, special representative for Korean Peninsula peace and security affairs, is part of Seoul's efforts to maintain close coordination with the international community in handling the North Korea issue, according to the ministry's spokesman, Kim In-chul.
He did not elaborate on Lee's itinerary at a press briefing. An informed source later said Lee is scheduled to leave for Moscow on Monday.
He also plans to meet with his Japanese counterpart, Kenji Kanasugi, on Friday for talks on North Korea.
Kanasugi, director general of the Japanese foreign ministry's Asian and Oceanian affairs bureau, arrived here on Thursday, and had a meeting with Kim Yong-kil, director general for Northeast Asian affairs at Seoul's foreign ministry, on bilateral relations.
Following his Russia visit, Lee will head to Brussels to attend a session of the European Union's Political and Security Committee and meet with Helga Schmid, secretary general of the European External Action Service.
"Such a series of consultations with major countries is expected to serve as an important occasion to review diplomacy on the North Korean nuclear issue in the wake of the second North Korea-U.S. summit and discuss the direction of the next steps," Kim, the ministry's spokesman, said.
Lee had talks with Stephen Biegun, the U.S. special representative for North Korea, in Washington D.C. last week.
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