S.KOREA, JAPAN HOLD FIRST BILATERAL TALKS SINCE 2019, SEEK STRONGER TIES

South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida held their first one-on-one talks on Wednesday and agreed on the need to improve relations dogged by historical disputes.

 

The meeting took place in New York on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly, the first such talks between leaders of the two countries since 2019.

 

Yoon, who took office in May, has been keen to improve relations with Tokyo, which have been plagued by disputes stemming from Japan’s 1910-45 colonization of the Korean peninsula, at a time when both countries face North Korea’s evolving nuclear and missile threats. Japan has also stressed the importance of strategic cooperation.

 

“The two leaders agreed on the need to improve relations by resolving pending issues, for which they agreed to accelerate diplomatic talks while continuing discussions between themselves,” Yoon’s deputy spokesperson, Lee Jae-myoung, said in a statement.

 

Lee said the leaders shared serious concerns about North Korea’s nuclear program, including its recent law authorizing first use of nuclear weapons and the possibility of a resumption of nuclear testing for the first time since 2017.

 

Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

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