Japan-Republic of Korea Relations
Japan-ROK Foreign Ministers’ Meeting
On March 17, commencing at around 9:30 a.m. for approximately 45 minutes, Mr. Taro Kono, Minister for Foreign Affairs, held a foreign ministers' meeting with H.E. Dr. Kang Kyung-wha, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea (ROK). The overview of the meeting is as follows.
- Minister Kono expressed his appreciation for the detailed explanation provided by Mr. Seo Hoon, Director of the National Intelligence Service of the ROK, about the outcomes of the ROK special envoy delegation's visit to North Korea and the United States, and also extended his respect for the efforts by the Government of the ROK to date.
- Minister Kono noted that based on past experience, it is necessary to uphold the maximum pressure campaign to ensure that North Korea abandons all nuclear and ballistic missile programs in a complete, verifiable, and irreversible manner. He stated that Japan's stance of seeking to normalize its relations with North Korea remains the same, in accordance with the Japan-DPRK Pyongyang Declaration, through comprehensively resolving outstanding issues of concern such as the abductions, nuclear and missile issues. He requested the ROK side to raise the abductions issue during the upcoming inter-Korean summit meeting and also noted that Japan will engage in close trilateral cooperation with the ROK and the United States ahead of the inter-Korean and U.S.-North Korea summit meetings.
- The two ministers confirmed that Japan and the ROK will continue to apply maximum pressure to ensure that North Korea's words are translated into concrete actions to abandon its nuclear and missile programs. The two ministers also confirmed that Japan and the ROK will cooperate towards the resolution of the abductions issue.
- With regard to bilateral relations, the two ministers confirmed that they will work together to advance a future-oriented Japan-ROK relationship while properly managing difficult issues.