south korea new president Jung Yeon-je/AFP/Getty Images

Le nouveau président sud-coréen face à Pyongyang

SEOUL – Moon Jae-in, le candidat du parti démocrate, vient d'être élu président de la Corée du Sud. C'est la deuxième transition d'un gouvernement conservateur à un gouvernement libéral depuis que le pays connaît un régime démocratique. Tout a commencé de manière inattendue en octobre 2016, avec une grosse affaire de corruption impliquant la présidente Park Geun-hye. Le scandale a conduit à sa destitution au cours du premier trimestre de cette année. Ce fut un épisode difficile pour le pays, mais il traduit la résilience de la démocratie sud-coréenne.

Moon prend ses fonctions dans une période de regain de tension avec la Corée du Nord. Pour comprendre ce que sera sa politique, il faut connaître la pensée des libéraux sud-coréens en matière de politique étrangère depuis la présidence de Kim Dae-jung entre 1998 et 2003.

Kim considérait la Guerre froide comme un aboutissement pacifique pour l'Europe et il espérait parvenir à une conclusion analogue dans la confrontation de son pays avec le régime communiste de Corée du Nord. Il a établi des contacts directs avec lui dans le cadre de sa Sunshine Policy, la politique de normalisation des relations du Sud avec le Nord. Son successeur, Roh Moo-hyun (dont j'ai été le ministre des Affaires étrangères), a poursuivi la même politique. Avant son décès en 2009, il a été un mentor et un ami proche de Moon.

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