President Moon Jae-in again stressed the need for bipartisan efforts to deal with security issues Tuesday, saying the country can overcome any difficulty if all work together.
The remarks came in a meeting with the country's five highest leaders, including Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon and National Assembly Speaker Chung Sye-kyun.
"As you know, the reason our security condition is bad is because security issues are created by external factors, but under the current circumstances, there is little we can do about (it)," the president told the meeting held at the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae.
"But even though there are external factors, I believe we can surely overcome the difficulty as long as we remain united," he added, according to Cheong Wa Dae pool reports.
Tuesday's meeting marked the first of its kind since Moon appointed the new chief justice of the Supreme Court, Kim Meong-su. The top five leaders also included Kim Yong-deok, head of the National Election Commission and a Supreme Court justice, and Kim Yi-su, a justice and acting chief of the Constitutional Court.
The president also reiterated his call to create a permanent consultative body between the ruling and opposition parties and the government.
"I believe it will help bring people's minds together if a permanent government affairs consultation body can be formed to allow the ruling and opposition parties and the government to share their views and enable bipartisan efforts at least on security issues," he said.
The parliamentary speaker agreed on the need to address security concerns, largely created by North Korea's repeated provocations, and called for efforts to prevent security concerns adversely affecting the economy.
"I believe we must all join our efforts to make sure security concerns will not lead to economic difficulties," Chung was quoted as saying.(Yonhap News)