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“Strengthening a national readiness system through cooperation between civilians, government, military, and police”

President Yoon Suk Yeol presided over a Central United Defense Council meeting

“North Korea is expected to interfere in South Korea’s general thoroughly prepared”

The 39th Infantry Division and 52nd Infantry Division received presidential citations

Eleven civilian observers attended


“Strengthening a national readiness system through

P. President Yoon Suk Yeol presides over the 57th meeting of the Central United Defense Council at Cheong Wa Dae Yeongbingwan on January 31. The meeting was attended by more than 30 officials including Prime Minister Han Duck-soo, National Security Office Director Chang Ho-jin, Defense Minister Shin Won Sik, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Kim Myung-soo serving as the head of United Defense Headquarters, Chief of Staff of the Army Park An-su, Chief of Staff of the Air Force Lee Young-soo, and ROK/U.S. Combined Forces Command Deputy Commander Kang Shin-chul.

Provided by the Office of President


President Yoon Suk Yeol said on January 31, “The North Korean regime is an irrational state that is the only country in the world to have legislated the pre-emptive use of nuclear weapons. This year, it will carry out various provocations to interfere in the general election, such as border incursions, unmanned aerial vehicle infiltrations, fake news, cyber-attacks and disturbances in the rear.”


He added, “In the event of a security crisis, a comprehensive national preparedness system based on cooperation between civilians, government, military and police must be strengthened.”


President Yoon said this while presiding over the 57th meeting of the Central United Defense Council held at Cheong Wa Dae Yeongbingwan in the morning.


President Yoon said, “National security has two dimensions: the defense of the country and the protection of people’s safety (physical dimension) and the preservation of our liberal democratic system (value dimension). They are two sides of the same coin. While the military is responsible for physical security, in the event of a crisis, civilians, the military, the government and the police must work together.”


He added, “Almost all people’s activities are now connected online, so cyber-attacks can instantly devastate a state’s functions and people’s daily lives. To prevent cyber-attacks on core national infrastructure, fake news and false propaganda and incitement, I will listen to and faithfully discuss this with people in the field.”


President Yoon said, “This is the first meeting of the Central United Defense Council to use virtual scenarios to further improve the substance. Based on today’s discussions, I urge national and local governments to make thorough preparations for people’s safety.”


The Central United Defense Council, attended by all officials involved in national defense, is held annually to assess the major achievements in the development of the united defense posture during the previous year.


The meeting discussed realistic responses and the respective roles of the government, military and local governments in protecting the safety of people from provocations such as long-range artillery shelling and cyber and electromagnetic attacks on infrastructure, including airports.


The meeting was followed by an awards ceremony for outstanding organizations and units. Presidential citations were awarded to the 39th Infantry Division and the 52nd Infantry Division, the Seoul Yangcheon-gu Office, the Gyeonggi Nambu Police Station and the Korea Midland Power Boryeong Power Plant Headquarters, which made the most outstanding contributions to the establishment of a unified defense posture during the past year.


Eleven civilian observers also attended the meeting for the first time, including people who contributed to the united defense by reporting a North Korean wooden boat for defection and ships that entered the South illegally, as well as representatives of border areas, Seoul metropolitan areas and the rear. The participation of these observers strengthened the significance of the united defense.


In the afternoon, President Yoon hosted a conference of top commanders and inspected the military defense posture against provocations from the North.


First Deputy Director of National Security In Seong-hwan said in a briefing the day before that the president’s dedication of a full day to national security affairs is for the commander-in-chief of the nation’s armed forces to be briefed on the security preparedness of the military and the government in recognition of the current grave security situation.

By Hyun-woo, Seo <>

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