Football diplomacy: South Korea's Moon says regional bloc including North Korea can host 2030 World Cup

South Korea's President Moon Jae In has been open to more dialogue with North Korea since he was elected.
South Korea's President Moon Jae In has been open to more dialogue with North Korea since he was elected. PHOTO: AFP

SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea's President Moon Jae In suggested on Monday (June 12) that countries in North-east Asia could form a bloc - including isolated North Korea - to co-host the 2030 Fifa World Cup, his presidential office said.

"If the neighbouring countries in North-east Asia, including North and South Korea, can host the World Cup together, it would help to create peace in North and South Korea as well as North-east Asia," Moon was cited as saying by his spokesman Park Su Hyun.

The South Korean president has been open to more dialogue with North Korea since he was elected on May 10. North Korea has so far shown no sign of responding, however, instead conducting missile tests at an unprecedented pace in defiance of the global sanctions imposed on it.

Moon made the comments during a meeting with Gianni Infantino, the president of Fifa, earlier on Monday.

Infantino has been visiting South Korea since last week for the Fifa Under-20 World Cup final between England and Venezuela that was held on Sunday (June 11).

Infantino said he would relay Moon's suggestions to China's President Xi Jinping, whom he is scheduled to visit later this week.

South Korea co-hosted the World Cup in 2002 with Japan.