Allies’ defense chiefs vow full support for summit diplomacy on N. Korea

SINGAPORE, The defense chiefs of South Korea and the United States agreed Saturday to maintain their robust alliance in the face of North Korea's recent peace offensive.

In talks held on the margins of the Shangri-La Dialogue, an annual security forum, in Singapore, Defense Minister Song Young-moo and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis shared the view that the summit between the North and the U.S. later this month will serve as a "historic chance" for the denuclearization of the peninsula and establishment of permanent peace, according to Seoul's defense ministry.

They agreed to bolster "communication and coordination" to provide "military-level" support for the creation of positive conditions for the success of the summit scheduled to take place in Singapore on June 12, the ministry added.

Regardless of the security conditions in Korea, Mattis said, Washington's "ironclad" security commitment for South Korea will remain unchanged.

When it comes to U.S. Forces Korea, which has around 28,500 service members, he was quoted as telling Song that the Pentagon will maintain the current level of "combat power."

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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