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Japan proposes trilateral teleconference with China and South Korea on response to COVID-19

Asahi wrote that the GOJ has proposed to China and South Korea that the three nations hold a teleconference between their health ministers to discuss the COVID-19 outbreak. The paper speculated that the move is intended to reaffirm strengthened cooperation between the three nations in light of Seoul’s de facto retaliation against Tokyo’s stepped-up entry restrictions on China and South Korea. According to the paper, National Security Secretariat Secretary General Kitamura proposed enhancing information sharing through a teleconference in his meetings with Chinese Ambassador to Tokyo Kong Xuanyou and ROK Ambassador Nam Gwan-pyo at the Kantei on Wednesday by saying that the virus outbreak is a national crisis for each of the three countries. Kitamura reportedly told the ROK envoy that Japan’s tightened entry restrictions are not politically motivated.

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