"A divided Korea is a legacy of the Cold War that should be resolved for peace and stability in the region," said National Assembly member Kim Sung-tae, co-chairman of Korea United, a grassroots movement for unification.
The continued division hampers regional cooperation and increases instability in the region, said Chung Tae-ik, former South Korean ambassador to Russia, while North Korea's nuclear program threatens global stability.
Calling unification a "historic inevitability," Charles Morrison, president of the East-West Center, a think tank in Hawaii, said it was necessary for peace and prosperity in the region.
"I don't think you can have an Asian-Pacific community without a united Korea," he said.
Morrison also noted that Korea is the last of the countries broken up as part of the settlement of World War II that remained divided. He said that the Six Party talks only addressed the North Korean nuclear issue and not unification.
Moon Hyun-jin, chairman of the Global Peace Festival, which sponsored the conference, called unification "the most effective means to peace and prosperity for the Korean people and the world."
Moon is also chairman of UCI, which owns UPI.