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Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

S. Korea Discuss Joining AUKUS Alliance

Wed 01 May 2024 | 12:40 PM
Israa Farhan

South Korea is considering joining the security partnership known as AUKUS, comprising Australia, Britain, and the United States, making it the latest major country in the Indo-Pacific region to explore collaboration with the group.

Meanwhile, New Zealand stated that it is "far from joining."

During the annual meeting of South Korean and Australian officials, South Korean Defense Minister Shin Won-sik stated that discussions are underway regarding Seoul's contribution to AUKUS Pillar 2, focusing on research cooperation in strategic areas such as artificial intelligence and quantum computing.

"We welcome AUKUS members considering South Korea as a partner in AUKUS Pillar 2. Korea's scientific and technological defense capabilities will contribute to achieving peace, stability, and regional security," Shin said during a press conference in Melbourne, as reported by Bloomberg.

On Tuesday, the defense ministers of South Korea and Australia discussed ways to enhance regional security cooperation and defense industry collaboration.

The South Korean Ministry of Defense noted that the ministers appreciated the deepening defense industry relations, especially in light of Australia's procurement of Korean weapon systems, agreeing to continue strengthening the partnership, according to Yonhap News Agency.

South Korea is the latest country to explore collaboration with AUKUS, with Japan and New Zealand also expressing interest in recent months.

AUKUS, established in September 2021 by Australia, Britain, and the United States, aims to enhance defense and research capabilities of the three countries amid growing competition with China.