South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol has been caught insulting US lawmakers and calling them idiots. Yoon was overheard saying American lawmakers these idiots after holding a meet with US President Joe Biden, who pledged $6 billion at a Global Fund event.
"What an embarrassment for Biden, if these idiots refuse to grant it in Congress," said Yoon, and the video was live-streamed on South Korean television. In the video, Yoon is seen insulting the American lawmakers with Foreign Minster Park Jin in New York. His comments were caught on a microphone.
Yoon Insulted US Lawmakers
Calling the comments unofficial, a senior South Korean presidential office official that Yoon's comments were unverified. The official also highlighted that it was unofficial to see such private comments as a 'reflection on the administration's diplomatic achievements.'
Yoon's Official Said His Comments Were Unofficial And Unverified
Yoon met Biden on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. The two reaffirmed their commitment to addressing the threat posed by North Korea.
Biden also discussed ongoing cooperation on a broad range of priority issues including supply chain resilience, critical technologies, economic and energy security, global health, and climate change, according to the White House.
Yoon Has Faced Criticism In His Country
Yoon has come under pressure at home to remedy provisions in the Inflation Reduction Act signed last month by Biden, which includes tax credits of as much as $7,500 for purchases of electric vehicles made in North America. That could disadvantage major South Korean brands like Hyundai and Kia, which don't yet have operational EV plants in the US, according to Bloomberg.
Yoon had also faced criticism previously as he shunned an in-person meeting with America's House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who visited South Korea last month when Yoon was on vacation. The Korean lawmakers had criticized him as he missed a chance to lobby on Seoul's behalf over the legislation.