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U.S. vows to boost trilateral coordination with Japan, South Korea

Kyodo News reported from Washington this morning that the United States on Thursday pledged to strengthen trilateral coordination with Japan and South Korea despite a sharp deterioration in ties between the two U.S. allies. “We’re going to do everything we can to pursue ways to strengthen our relationships between and amongst all three countries both publicly and behind the scenes,” State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said at a press briefing. In an apparent reference to pressing issues such as denuclearization of North Korea and China’s military buildup, Ortagus said Washington, Tokyo, and Seoul “all face shared regional challenges and priorities in the Indo-Pacific and all around the world.” But she did not comment on the sharply worsening ties between Japan and South Korea.

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