Published: Sun, February 11, 2018

Korea, Japan Squarely Look at History

Korea, Japan Squarely Look at History

The Japanese Prime Minister visited South Korea for the opening ceremony of the 23rd Winter Olympics at the country's east county of PyeongChang.

The two leaders are widely expected to discuss ways to peacefully resolve the North Korean nuclear issue and rein in the communist state's evolving missile technology.

Abe also said he would convey to Moon Tokyo's position on a 2015 bilateral agreement on "comfort women" - many Korean - who were forced to work in Japanese military brothels during World War Two, while urging "future-oriented" two-way ties.

Pyongyang has staged 11 missile launches since Moon took office in May a year ago, including several ballistic missiles that flew over Japan.

It was the third summit between the two leaders following the first one on the sidelines of the G-20 Summit in Germany last July, and on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Russian Federation in September.

Under the 2015 deal between Japan and South Korea, reached by Abe and Moon's predecessor, Japan apologised to former "comfort women" and provided a 1 billion yen ($9 million) fund to help them.

The unnamed official of South Korea's presidential Blue House was quoted as saying that Abe told Moon on Friday that it was not a right time to delay the annual joint military drills between South Korea and the US.

Moon has stressed the need for the two countries to work together despite their differences over how to address historical disputes that also include forced labor of many Koreans during Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule of Korea, calling their cooperation a vital part of global efforts to denuclearize North Korea.

Mr Pence spoke after paying tribute at a memorial for 46 South Korean sailors killed in the sinking of a warship in 2010 that Seoul blamed on a North Korean torpedo attack.

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