Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968-1969

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Author: Lyndon B. Johnson  | Date: April 17, 1968

201
Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Park of Korea.
April 17, 1968

AT THE INVITATION of President Lyndon B. Johnson of the United States, President Chung Hoe Park of the Republic of Korea visited Honolulu on April 17 and 18 to exchange views on the current international situation and matters of common interest and mutual concern.

KOREAN SITUATION

The two Presidents reviewed in detail the serious threat to the security of the Republic of Korea and to peace in East Asia resulting from the increasingly belligerent and aggressive actions of the north Korean communists during the past eighteen months, including the attack directed at the official residence of the President of the Republic of Korea and the seizure of USS PUEBLO in international waters in January. They reviewed the plans of their two governments for dealing with the grave situation created by these north Korean acts of aggression. President Park expressed his deep sympathy for the families and relatives of the crew of the USS PUEBLO and sincerely hoped that they will soon regain their freedom from the hands of the north Korean communists.

The two Presidents agreed that further aggressive actions by the north Korean communists would constitute a most grave threat to peace. In that event, their two governments would immediately determine the action to be taken to meet this threat under the Mutual Defense Treaty between the United States and the Republic of Korea. In accordance with this Treaty President Johnson reaffirmed the readiness and determination of the United States to render prompt and effective assistance to repel armed attacks against the Republic of Korea.

President Johnson reaffirmed the adherence of his government to the Joint Policy Declaration which was signed on July 27, 1953 by the sixteen nations which supported the Republic of Korea during the Korean War.

The two Presidents reviewed the extraordinary measures which have been taken to strengthen Korean and American forces in the Republic of Korea. They agreed that these efforts should be continued in order that the Armed Forces of their countries would be able to deal effectively and swiftly with all contingencies in Korea.

The two Presidents recognized the need for strengthening security of the Republic of Korea as important not only for Korea but for the security of the general area. President Johnson recognized the need for continuing modernization of the armed forces of the Republic of Korea and the two Presidents reviewed the contribution which U.S. military assistance would make to such modernization and to the strengthening of the effective counter-infiltration programs which have already been developed by the Republic of Korea. They agreed that the first meeting between their respective Defense Ministries at ministerial level should be held in Washington in May to discussand deliberate these matters further.

President Park outlined and discussed the various measures being taken by his government to ensure public safety and to thwart north Korean attempts at infiltration and sabotage. President Johnson expressed his satisfaction with and support for those measures, including the organization of the Homeland Reserve Force, which he felt were wise and farseeing.

President Johnson expressed his admiration for the rapid economic progress of the Republic of Korea, which has continued without pause despite the attempts of the north Korean regime to disrupt public order and confidence in the South. The two Presidents agreed that continued private investment from the United States and other friendly countries was desirable, and should be encouraged.

VIETNAM

The two Presidents reviewed in detail the situation in South Vietnam where Korean and American forces are fighting shoulder-to-shoulder to assist the Republic of Vietnam to defend against aggression and to assure the right of the South Vietnamese people to determine their own future without external interference or terrorist pressure.

The two Presidents noted the vigorous actions taken by the South Vietnamese Government to strengthen and increase its armed forces and to improve government effectiveness.

The two Presidents agreed that the common goal of an honorable and secure peace required the earnest pursuit of a diplomatic solution coupled with continued resolution and military firmness. They expressed the policy of their governments to sustain their efforts to meet the requirements of the struggle in all respects until peace is attained.

President Johnson reviewed the developments in the past two weeks, initiated by his decision—in consultation with the Republic of Vietnam and with the nations contributing military forces to its support—to reduce the area of bombing in North Vietnam. President Park expressed his satisfaction with these developments.

President Johnson explained in detail the current status of efforts to set a time and place for early contacts between American and North Vietnamese representatives. He reviewed with President Park the position that American representatives would take in contacts, reaffirming that the United States Government would continue to consult fully with the Republic of Korea and other allies concerning negotiating developments and positions to be taken on the allied side at each stage.

Looking forward to their common hope that serious talks on the substance of peace could begin in the near future, the two Presidents reaffirmed that the allied position would continue to be based on the Manila Communiqué of 1966.

The two Presidents also reaffirmed the position stated in the Seven-Nation Foreign Ministers Meeting of April 1967—that a settlement in Vietnam, to be enduring, must respect the wishes and aspirations of the Vietnamese people; that the Republic of Vietnam should be a full participant in any negotiations designed to bring about a settlement of the conflict; and that the allied nations which have helped to defend the Republic of Vietnam should participate in any settlement of the conflict.

ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

President Park highly commended the great role and persistent efforts of the United States to bring about freedom, peace andprosperity in Asia and the Pacific. He expressed his conviction that a continued United States presence in this region is essential to a just and lasting peace.

President Johnson expressed determination that the United States should continue its efforts for stability and security in the region, in accordance with the desires and aspirations of Asian peoples themselves.

In this regard, the two Presidents reaffirmed their commitment to the "Declaration on Peace and Progress in Asia and the Pacific" issued at the Summit Conference in Manila in October, 1966.

CONCLUSION

President Park expressed his deep appreciation to President Johnson and to the Governor and citizens of Hawaii for the warmth of their reception and for the many courtesies extended to him during the visit.

NOTE: The joint statement was released at Honolulu, Hawaii.

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Chicago: Lyndon B. Johnson, "201 Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Park of Korea.," Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968-1969 in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968-1969 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1369 517–518. Original Sources, accessed April 19, 2018, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=DK2NDF6F69LC9VI.

MLA: Johnson, Lyndon B. "201 Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Park of Korea." Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968-1969, in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968-1969 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1369, pp. 517–518. Original Sources. 19 Apr. 2018. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=DK2NDF6F69LC9VI.

Harvard: Johnson, LB, '201 Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Park of Korea.' in Public Papers of Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968-1969. cited in , Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson, 1968-1969 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1369, pp.517–518. Original Sources, retrieved 19 April 2018, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=DK2NDF6F69LC9VI.