SEOUL – More than 60 percent of South Koreans are in favor of an inter-Korean summit, amid the current rapprochement driven by the Olympic Games in PyeongChang.
According to the Realmeter survey report released on Thursday, 61.5 percent of the people questioned support a summit between South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in and North’s leader Kim Jong-un, proposed by Kim Yo-jong, sister of North Korea’s leader, during her visit to the South as part of a high-level delegation that witnessed the opening of the Games, nicknamed the “Peace Games.”
However, 31.2 percent of South Koreans are opposed to the proposed summit in Pyongyang, citing the need to prioritize compliance with the sanctions imposed on the North Korean regime and put pressure on the neighboring country for its weapons development program, while 7.3 percent expressed indifference over the summit.
By region, in the southwestern Jeolla provinces and Gwangju City, where voters have traditionally tended to be liberal-minded, 82.5 percent of the residents expressed their support for the summit, while 60 percent of residents in the capital Seoul also expressed a positive view.
In the main southeastern cities of South Korea, however, opinions were divided.
In terms of age, 72.8 percent of South Koreans in their 40s support the meeting between the two leaders, as did 65.9 percent of the people in their 30s and 65.8 percent in their 20s, according to the survey.
Some 57.5 percent of South Koreans in their 50s also supported the proposed summit, while the figure for people in their 60s or above 60 supporting it reached 49.3 percent.
If the inter-Korean meeting at the highest level is to be convened in Pyongyang, it would be the first in more than a decade following the ones in 2000 and 2007, held in the North’s capital during the years of the so-called “Sunshine Policy,” which marked the closest relations to date between the two countries.
Among those who participated in such meetings were the late leader and father of Kim Jong-un, Kim Jong-il, and the late former presidents of the South, Kim Dae-jung and Roh Moo-hyun, respectively.