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(LEAD) S. Korea's vice defense minister attends U.S.-led dialogue on support for Ukraine

Defense 11:16 May 24, 2022

(ATTN: UPDATES with defense ministry's aid plan for Ukraine in paras 6-8)

SEOUL, May 24 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's Vice Defense Minister Shin Beom-chul has attended a virtual session of a U.S.-led forum on support for war-torn Ukraine, his ministry said Tuesday.

Hosted by U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Monday's session of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group involved officials from some 40 countries. Participants discussed the situation in Ukraine and joint efforts to aid the nation, according to the ministry.

Shin strongly condemned Russia's invasion of Ukraine as an "act that runs counter to the principle of the U.N. Charter" and explained Seoul's efforts to support the country, including its shipment of humanitarian and non-lethal aid.

He also said that President Yoon Suk-yeol's administration will consider ways to make additional contributions "in consideration of our responsibilities and role as a global pivotal state."

The Yoon administration has promoted the slogan "global pivotal state," in a show of its commitment to playing an active role in tackling regional and global challenges.

Amid the global solidarity in support of Ukraine, South Korea is pushing to send another batch of military supplies to Ukraine, Col. Moon Hong-sik, deputy spokesperson of Seoul's defense ministry, told a regular press briefing.

"We are making efforts to ensure such assistance can be delivered at an early date, and we are in consultation with the related country on details," he said.

But Moon stressed the need for a "cautious review" when asked if Seoul is considering shipping any lethal arms to Ukraine.

The multilateral dialogue was launched in April to discuss effective ways of providing aid to Ukraine. Among the participating countries are Japan, New Zealand and members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

sshluck@yna.co.kr
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