Executive Intelligence Review


Japan and South Korea Take Steps To Improve Relations

Feb. 1, 2018 (EIRNS)—Japan and South Korea are taking concrete steps to improve relations, parallel to similar efforts taking place between Japan and China, and between China and South Korea. Cooperation among the three powerful nations of East Asia, in the context of the Belt and Road, will vastly improve the means for a peaceful solution to the Korea crisis, and facilitate cooperative expansion of the Silk Road internationally.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will attend the Winter Olympics in South Korea, and has arranged to meet with President Moon Jae-in on the morning of the Opening Ceremonies, Feb. 9. There is anger in Japan over the fact that a task force created by Moon concluded in December 2017 that the 2015 agreement over the World War II Korean “Comfort Women” was flawed. However, on Jan. 9 Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha assured Japan that Seoul would not call for the agreement to be renegotiated. Hopefully, the Abe-Moon summit will be able to address other issues of positive cooperation.

Also in Japan, Yomiuri Shimbun reported today that Japan and China are likely to restart their education and training exchanges for defense officials in September, after a six-year hiatus, as another result of Foreign Ministers Taro Kono and Wang Yi’s meeting last weekend in Beijing. China stopped the military exchanges when Japan nationalized the contested Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands in September 2012. Japan will now make arrangements with China for Chinese trainees to attend a 10-month program in Japan.

State visits by President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are also being planned.