September 21, 2023

With a “crude” new foreign minister, North Korea strengthens its hard-line turn

Ri Son Gwon, with his reputation for bluster, may be the ideal DPRK diplomat if tensions rise in the coming year

It was September 2018, and peace and reconciliation was the talk of Pyongyang as a gaggle of South Korean VIPs descended on the North Korean capital for a gala summit between President Moon Jae-in and DPRK leader Kim Jong Un.

Among those VIPs were some of South Korea's richest men: Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, LG Group Chairman Koo Kwang-mo, and SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won.