South Asia and Beyond

Japan, South Korea Agree To Work On Issues Related To North Korea

Japan and South Korea agreed to keep working together to address issues related to North Korea in days to come
 Japan, South Korea Agree To Work On Issues Related To North Korea

Japan and South Korea yesterday said that they would continue to work together to address issues related to North Korea, Kyodo News Agency reported.

Japanese foreign minister Yoko Kamikawa and her counterpart Cho Tae Yul met in person on the sidelines of the G20 foreign ministers meet in Rio de Janeiro.

The meeting comes a month after both the ministers spoke and shared concerns about “provocative acts” by North Korea. They agreed to address the human rights violations carried out by Pyongyang, including its abductions of Japanese nationals decades ago, a sticking point in Japanese and North Korean relations.

Both sides, however, remained apart on the issue of forced labour during its brutal decades-long occupation of the Korean peninsula before and during World War II.

Seoul says that around 780,000 Koreans were conscripted into forced wartime labour including women forced into sexual slavery by Japanese troops.

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Tokyo has said that the 1965 treaty signed between both the countries in grants and cheap loans does not give the government the right to sue Korea.

Over the past few months, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has upped his ante with moves aimed at flaunting its military might including doing more missile tests, tearing down a monument in Pyongyang that symbolised the hopes of unification among others.

Earlier, he has said that PyongYang has the legal right to annihilate South Korea.The remarks came at the anniversary of the founding of North Korea’s military on February 8.

Describing Seoul as “enemy No.1,” Kim said that he would never hold dialogue or negotiations with South Korea and that the only way there can be lasting peace in the region is when the powerful military in the North is ready for any eventuality.

However, North Korea’s relations with Japan may see an improvement in days to come after the influential sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, expressed optimism that relations between North Korea and Japan could improve.