According to information obtained by RIA Novosti from a source close to the South Korean president-elect, South Korea will pursue an "even more constructive policy toward Russia than before" after new president Roh Moo Hyun takes office.
Roh Moo Hyun, who won the elections on December 19 and is supposed to take office in February next year, considers that "Russia plays an extremely important role in assuring peace and prosperity in the world and especially in the North-Eastern Asia," said one of his close associates. In that respect, he mentioned Russia's participation in the construction of the railroads between North and South Korea connecting to the Trans-Siberian railroad. He also stressed that "Russia is equally interested in peace and security on the Korean Peninsula".
The authorities in Seoul, the source continued, count on the possibility that Russia could manage to convince North Korea to start conducting a pragmatic policy and "become a responsible member of the world community through reforms and openness." "The new South Korean leadership makes all possible efforts to prevent a tragic situation on the Korean Peninsula and expresses the hope that Russia would actively support those efforts in the future," emphasized the source that wanted to remain anonymous.