Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Park of Korea.

November 02, 1966

1. AT THE invitation of President Chung Hee Park of the Republic of Korea, President Lyndon B. Johnson of the United States arrived in Seoul on October 31, 1966, for a state visit to the Republic of Korea. President Johnson met with President Park at the Blue House on November 1, 1966, for a discussion of the current international situation and to exchange views on problems of mutual concern to the two nations. After leaving the Blue House, the two Presidents continued their discussion in President Park's special train en route to visit the 26th Division of the Republic of Korea Army. Present for these talks were Secretary of State Dean Rusk, Ambassador Winthrop G. Brown, Special Assistant to the President Walt Rostow, Assistant Secretary of State William Bundy, Prime Minister Il Kwon Chung, Deputy Prime Minister Key Young Chang, Foreign Minister Tong Won Lee, Minister of National Defense Sung Eun Kim, Mr. Hu Rak Lee, and other high officials of both governments.

BASIC POLICY

2. President Park and President Johnson reaffirmed the strong ties of friendship traditionally existing between the Republic of Korea and the United States and their determination to continue the closest cooperation and consultation to secure a lasting peace in Asia and the Pacific under which freedom, justice, and prosperity for all would prevail.

ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

3. The two Presidents confirmed their satisfaction at the unity demonstrated at the seven-nation conference held in Manila October 24 and 25, 1966. They are resolved to devote all their efforts to the realization of the high but now achievable hopes expressed by the participating nations in the "Joint Communiqué," "The Goals of Freedom," and "The Declaration on Peace and Progress in Asia and the Pacific."

Existing regional organizations and institutions should be developed to the fullest, with the continuing initiatives and efforts of nations in the area, whether or not represented in Manila.

The evolving partnership of a new Pacific community should be open to all nations prepared to live at peace and to cooperate and work for the welfare of the people of Asia and the Pacific.

VIETNAM

4. President Johnson expressed the admiration of the American people for Korea's major contribution to the struggle in Vietnam and praised the Korean troops both for their valor on the field of battle and their effectiveness in peaceful and constructive endeavors to promote the welfare and improve the livelihood of the Vietnamese people.

The two Presidents stressed that the defeat of aggression in Vietnam is vital to the full achievement of the goals stated at Manila. They again agreed to continue their military and other efforts, as firmly and as long as may be necessary, and at the same time to be prepared to pursue any avenue that could lead to a secure and just peace. They specifically reaffirmed that they would continue to act in the closest consultation in both these areas.

KOREAN INTERNATIONAL ACTIONS

5. The two Presidents reviewed the actions of the Republic of Korea in the international field under President Park's leadership since their last meeting in May 1965. They noted in particular that the normalization of relations between the Republic of Korea and Japan had contributed significantly to the achievement of an atmosphere of further unity and stability in this part of the world. President Johnson expressed the view that the despatch of troops to help defend the Republic of Vietnam, the convening of the ASPAC meeting in Seoul, and the initiative for the seven-nation conference in Manila, together with the significant role which the Republic of Korea played at the conference were outstanding achievements which had placed Korea in the forefront of the free nations of Asia and earned the respect and admiration of free men everywhere.

DEFENSE OF KOREA

6. The two Presidents acknowledged the need to ensure that the forces of aggression do not again menace the peace and tranquility of the Republic of Korea. They agreed that the growing strength of the Communist forces in the northern part of Korea and of the Chinese Communists remained a major threat to the security of the Republic of Korea and neighboring areas. President Johnson reaffirmed the readiness and determination of the United States to render prompt and effective assistance to defeat an armed attack against the Republic of Korea, in accordance with the Mutual Defense Treaty of 1954. President Johnson assured President Park that the United States has no plan to reduce the present level of United States forces in Korea, and would continue to support Korean armed forces at levels adequate to ensure Korea's security. They agreed that their two governments would continue to consult closely to ensure that the Korean forces are strengthened and modernized within the limitations imposed by legislative and budgetary considerations.

KOREAN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

7. President Park reviewed for President Johnson the progress which Korea had made in recent years in its economic and social development and in achieving political stability, and expressed his appreciation for United States cooperation in this effort. He outlined the objectives of the second 5-year economic development plan, by which the Republic of Korea intends to accelerate this progress toward its goal of a self-sustaining economy and a better life for the Korean people.

8. President Johnson expressed his warm admiration for the significant achievements of the Korean Government and people in increasing agricultural production, industrial output, savings, and domestic revenues over the past 18 months. He assured President Park that the United States Government intends to continue to support the growth of the Korean economy and in particular the implementation of the second 5-year plan. The two Presidents, noting the availability of funds to the Republic of Korea from other friendly governments and from international lending institutions such as the World Bank and the newly constituted Asian Development Bank, agreed that further development loans, food for peace, and technical help in specialized areas would be the major forms of United States assistance to the achievement of Korea's economic goals, as contemplated in their May 1965 joint communiqué.

TRADE AND EXCHANGES IN ALL FIELDS

9. The two Presidents agreed that the stability and progress of the Korean economy should make possible a substantial further expansion in trade between the two nations and in American private investment in Korea. They agreed to an early exchange of missions to these ends. In the same spirit, they agreed that exchanges among cultural leaders and intellectual groups in both countries should be promoted to the fullest possible extent, both through private and public channels.

SCIENTIFIC DEVELOPMENT

10. Recalling their agreement of May 1965, to cooperate in the establishment of a new institute to bring the benefits of applied science and technology to the Korean economy and people, the two Presidents noted with pleasure the strong progress that had been made toward the establishment of the Korean Institute of Science and Technology, which is destined to make a fundamental and significant contribution to the modernization of life and industry in the Republic of Korea.

KOREAN UNIFICATION

11. President Park expressed the heartfelt desire of all Koreans for the unification of their homeland, and reaffirmed that it remains the firm policy of his government to seek reunification under the objectives and principles established by the United Nations and the relevant resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly. President Johnson pledged his continued strong support for this policy. The two Presidents deplored the continuing refusal of the Communists to accept the competence and authority of the United Nations, which refusal is responsible for prolonging the artificial division of Korea.

CONCLUSION

12. On behalf of Mrs. Johnson, the members of his party, and the American people, President Johnson expressed his deepest thanks to President Park and to all citizens of the Republic of Korea for the overwhelming warmth of their reception and for the many courtesies extended to him during his visit.

Note: For the President's joint communiqué with President Park, released May 18, 1965, see 1965 volume, this series, Book I, Item 257.

On December 15, 1966, the White House announced that George W. Ball, chairman of Lehman International, Ltd., and former Under Secretary of State, would head a "privately organized delegation of U.S. businessmen to Korea during the week of March 20, 1967, to stimulate American private investment and to promote increased U.S.-Korean trade" (2 Weekly Comp. Pres. Docs., p. 1796).

Lyndon B. Johnson, Joint Statement Following Discussions With President Park of Korea. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/237659

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