NEW YORK: South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida have held their first one-on-one talks and agreed on the need to improve relations dogged by historical disputes.
The meeting on Wednesday took place in New York on the sidelines of the United Nations 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 ties with Tokyo, which have been plagued by disputes stemming from Japan’s 1910-45 colonisation 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. Both sides described the meeting, which lasted 30 minutes, as “informal”.
Japan’s Foreign Ministry Press Secretary Hikariko Ono said the two leaders “shared the need to bring back the sound bilateral relationship with the resolution of various issues”.
She said they agreed to develop relations “in a future-oriented manner based on the foundation of the friendly and cooperative relationship that both countries built since the normalisation of diplomatic relations in 1965”. — Reuters