S.Korea, Japan aim to improve ties

Breakthrough talks involving South Korean and Japanese foreign ministers, ahead of planned meeting with PM Shinzo Abe

S.Korea, Japan aim to improve ties

World Bulletin / News Desk 

South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se met his Japanese counterpart Fumio Kishida on Sunday evening, according to local media.

A press release out of Seoul said talks would focus on matters of mutual interest.

Yun was making his first trip to Tokyo since assuming his current office shortly after South Korean President Park Geun-hye’s inauguration.

The minister had been due to go to Japan in 2013, but canceled the plan in protest at visits by leading Japanese officials to the Yasukuni Shrine, which commemorates 14 Class-A war criminals among those who lost their lives in service of the country’s former empire.

Abe has failed to convince Seoul that he recognizes the plight that these now elderly protesters endured -- Tokyo’s long-held argument is that such matters were settled under a 1965 treaty establishing diplomatic relations.

Yun’s arrival came ahead of the 50th anniversary of that accord. Although Park has so far refused to hold a one-on-one summit with her Japanese counterpart, Seoul’s foreign minister has an opportunity to present Abe with a personal message during a scheduled meeting this Monday.

Despite recent reports claiming that Park has noted progress in efforts to resolve the comfort women issue, Japan’s Kyodo News cited a diplomatic source Saturday in reporting that Tokyo has asked South Korea not to use the term “sex slave” during talks.

Other notable conflicts at present include Japan’s recent push for UNESCO recognition of key industrial revolution sites, which were also destinations for forced Korean labor.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 21 Haziran 2015, 14:38