Yoon says previous administration relied on 'fake peace'
By Lee Haye-ah
SEOUL, Feb. 8 (Yonhap) -- President Yoon Suk Yeol accused the previous administration on Wednesday of weakening the country's defense posture by neglecting necessary drills and relying on a "fake peace."
Yoon made the remark while presiding over the annual central integrated defense council meeting in an apparent reference to former President Moon Jae-in's push for reconciliation with North Korea.
Critics have argued the Moon administration's peace drive bought North Korea time to advance its missile and nuclear weapons programs.
"Under the previous government the meeting was downsized, and integrated drills between the civil sector, government, military and police were not properly implemented because of its reliance on fake peace," Yoon said during the meeting held at the former presidential compound of Cheong Wa Dae.
"As a result, there was a weakening in combining all national defense powers into one and in the implementation of the nationwide all-out war for the defense of the nation," he said.
The meeting, designed to assess the country's overall defense posture, was attended by some 160 officials and experts from the central and local governments, the National Intelligence Service, the military, police, Coast Guard and national fire agency.
It was the first time in seven years the president presided over the meeting. Yoon said he would preside over the meeting every year from now on.
"The security situation on the Korean Peninsula and in the surrounding regions is very grave," Yoon said, citing the possibility of North Korea's strategic provocations, such as a seventh nuclear test and an intercontinental ballistic missile launch.
"North Korea's asymmetric provocations and cyber attacks, and various threats of terrorism, are growing and the international security situation is volatile due to the war in Ukraine," he said.
Yoon called for ensuring a watertight integrated defense posture commensurate to North Korea's various forms of provocations.
He also called for properly conducting integrated defense drills that ensure no gaps under the current "grave" conditions.
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