South Korea might extend its support for Ukraine beyond humanitarian and economic aid if it comes under a large-scale attack on civilians, President Yoon Suk-yeol said, signaling a shift in his stance against arming Ukraine for the first time.

In an interview ahead of his state visit to the U.S. next week, Yoon said his government has been exploring how to help defend and rebuild Ukraine, just as South Korea received international assistance during the 1950-53 Korean War.

"If there is a situation the international community cannot condone, such as any large-scale attack on civilians, massacre or serious violation of the laws of war, it might be difficult for us to insist only on humanitarian or financial support," Yoon said.