TOKYO / SEOUL, April 1 (Yonhap) – South Korean and Japanese diplomats on Thursday reaffirmed the importance of tripartite cooperation with the United States for peace on the Korean Peninsula and the region. In Tokyo, according to the South Korean Foreign Ministry.
South Korea’s Foreign Ministry’s Asia and Pacific Director – General Lee Chang-Riol and his Japanese envoy, Tagro Fanakoshi, have been sharing this first-ever face-to-face meeting since October amid lengthy controversy over history and trade.
“The two CEOs reaffirmed the importance of cooperation between South Korea, the United States and Japan and South Korea and Japan for the promotion of peace and stability in the region,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
A day after South Korean Foreign Minister Chung-yu-yong renewed Seoul’s desire to improve bilateral relations, Washington has repeatedly called for stronger trilateral security cooperation with its two allies. Asians.
During the talks, Lee reiterated Seoul’s demand for Tokyo to be more honest in resolving the issue of forced labor, the foreign ministry said. The two sides also discussed Japan’s wartime sexual slavery.
The foreign ministry did not elaborate on whether the recent meeting had made any progress in resolving historic issues, but noted that the two sides had agreed to maintain close liaison.
It was estimated that diplomats could also discuss establishing talks between South Korean Foreign Minister and his Japanese counterpart Toshimitsu Modeki, as Chung renewed his willingness to meet with Moteki on an early date “in any form” on Wednesday.
Since the president took office in February, there have been no telephone or direct talks between Sung and his Japanese envoy as a sign of tense bilateral relations.
Seoul, Washington and Tokyo are reportedly in talks in the United States later this month to set up a tripartite meeting between Chung and US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Modeki to see if Chung and Modeki will be there. Bilateral meetings can be held outside of possible tripartite negotiations.
In recent months, Seoul has made a series of compromise gestures to Tokyo, seeking cooperation with Japan and other countries to resume dialogue with Pyongyang and advance its stalled agenda for lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula.
Washington seeks to revive its relationship with democratic allies, including Seoul’s efforts to strengthen its global leadership against the increasingly stable China.