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KDIS-FUIKS Korea Europe Center: 2021 Human Security and Development Forum

Over several decades, negotiations with North Korea have gone through various ups and downs. After a promising period three years ago, the talks to reach an agreement on denuclearization and a peace arrangement on the Korean peninsula have been deadlocked since the latest abortive attempt at the 2019 US-DPRK summit in Hanoi. However, such a stalemate is not new. All previous efforts to negotiate a settlement have proved unsuccessful, yet they have neither failed in the same way nor for the same reasons.

How can we explain the cycles of previous – and contemporary – high expectations followed by serious setbacks? What can we learn from the preceding experiences about what type of a deal might eventually be acceptable to all sides? What does Pyongyang want and does the Biden Administration have a good shot at achieving a deal? How can Europe help bring about a sustainable peace on the Korean peninsula?

To help find the best way forward, Glyn Ford, a long-term European politician who has ‘talked’ – and ‘listened’ – to North Korean officials during his nearly fifty visits to North Korea and numerous other encounters will join us for an online conversation.

2021 Human Security and Development Forum 5

2021 Human Security and Development Forum 5

Glyn Ford

Glyn Ford was a Labour Member of the European Parliament (1984-2009) and Deputy Leader of the Socialist Group. He was a visiting professor at Tokyo University and a POSCO Fellow at the East-West Center in Hawaii. While an MEP his focus was on Foreign Affairs and Trade, in particular in East Asia and ASEAN. He was a Member of the European Parliament’s Delegation with the Japanese Diet and helped establish the Parliament’s Delegation with the Korean Peninsula. He first travelled to Pyongyang in 1997 and subsequently organized a political dialogue with the Party Vice-Chair responsible for the International Department. Consequently, he has visited the North just short of fifty times.

Glyn Ford founded POLINT, focusing on European Politics, Foreign Relations and International Trade. He continued his engagement with the DPRK and East Asia. These activities, on a ‘non-profit’ basis, are carried out in the framework of the NGO Track2Asia. In 2008, he published North Korea on the Brink; Struggle for Survival (available in English, Japanese and Korean) and in 2018 Talking to North Korea (available in English and Korean).