S. Korea, US, Japan to hold talks next week

Seoul, Sep 22 (IANS) South Korea, the US and Japan plan to hold a trilateral meeting of their top diplomats next week in New York, Seoul’s foreign ministry said on Tuesday.

South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se will hold talks with US Secretary of State John Kerry and Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida in New York on September 29 during his visit there to attend the UN General Assembly, Xinhua news agency reported citing Seoul’s foreign ministry spokesman Noh Kwang-il.

During the trilateral meeting, Yun will apprise his US and Japanese counterparts about South Korea’s efforts to improve relations with North Korea and intensively discuss ways of trilateral coordination for peace and stability on the Korean peninsula, the spokesman said.

South Korea has reiterated its position that Japan must secure consent from or be requested by Seoul before its right to collective self-defence is exercised on the Korean peninsula as the security bills enacted in the Japanese parliament now allow Japan’s troops to fight overseas for the first time since the end of World War II.

South Korea and Japan held a director general-level meeting in Tokyo last week to discuss Japan’s forced recruitment of Korean women into sex slavery for Japanese military brothels during its colonisation of the Korean peninsula from 1910 to 1945, but no agreement was reached.

Spokesman Noh said no details have been fixed yet on the bilateral meeting between Yun and Kishida, but the two sides have already agreed to regularly hold such meeting between foreign ministers.

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