Previewing the South Korean visit
October 13th, 2011
08:11 AM ET

Previewing the South Korean visit

You've probably heard by now the South Korean president is making an official state visit to the White House today.  Here is the CNN Wire's preview of the day:

(CNN) - President Barack Obama welcomes his South Korean counterpart to the White House on Thursday, a day after Congress approved a free-trade agreement between the two nations.

Congress voted Wednesday on a bipartisan basis to pass free-trade bills with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.

"This visit will highlight the strong alliance, the global partnership, and the deep economic ties between the United States and the Republic of Korea," the White House said in a statement.

Obama will welcome President Lee Myung-bak and his wife at a 9 a.m ceremony. It will be followed by several bilateral meetings and capped off with a state dinner on Thursday.

Lee is a reliable ally for Obama, especially when it comes to U.S. policy on North Korea

Increased tensions between the Koreans have prompted the United States and Seoul to delay until December 2015 the transfer of wartime operational control of troops on the Korean peninsula to South Korea.

South Korea has seen the North launch artillery fire at Yeonpyeong island and sink one of its warships, at which time the United States stepped up joint military exercises with the South.

A warming of relations between the Koreas has been a U.S. condition of resuming nuclear talks with Pyongyang.

In addition to coordinating responses to the shared threat of North Korea, Washington and Seoul are also working together on climate change, economic issues through the G20 and a nuclear summit scheduled for next year in Seoul.

Topics: President Obama

soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. vkmo

    SKorea is small fry, but it's a good start. If you go look at stores – the big elephant is communist red china, led by mao-dzedung successors. They r refusing to budge, so the senate has decided to hit them hard. Let's hope that works.

    Another notable thought is that Walmart, US's biggest china importer, is hence the biggest beneficiary of china's unfair exchange rate. Walmart and other US companies knowingly took advantage of this and benefited immensely.

    October 13, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  2. Mark

    South Korea has to be one of our favorite countries right now. Samsung, LG, Hyundai, and Kia are part of out daily lives now.

    October 14, 2011 at 5:48 am |