All national dailies reported in their Saturday morning editions on the GOJ’s approval at a cabinet meeting on Friday of this year’s Defense White Paper. The papers wrote that the document criticizes South Korea’s decision to terminate its GSOMIA. The papers pointed out that in a chapter explaining Japan’s important security cooperation partners other than the United States, South Korea is mentioned fourth after Australia, India, and ASEAN, down from second place in the previous white paper. The document quotes former Defense Minister Iwaya as saying Seoul’s decision to withdraw from the bilateral pact was extremely disappointing.
According to Asahi, South Korea’s Foreign Ministry summoned on Friday a minister-counselor at the Japanese Embassy in Seoul to lodge a protest over Japan’s description of Seoul’s withdrawal from the GSOMIA. The ROK government said that Japan was laying blame on South Korea.