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U.S., Japan, ROK foreign ministers release joint statement

  • February 15, 2022
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All national papers reported that the foreign ministers of the United States, Japan, and the Republic of Korea released a joint statement on Saturday for the first time in five years after holding talks in Hawaii. Nikkei wrote that the three nations expanded their areas of cooperation from North Korea to Taiwan and Ukraine, adding that the joint statement stressed at the beginning the “critical importance of strong U.S.-Japan-ROK trilateral cooperation as we seek to address the most pressing 21st century challenges.” According to the papers, the three ministers expressed in their joint statement their concern over North Korea’s repeated missile launches and agreed to advance trilateral security cooperation. In addition, the ministers “committed to work closely together to deter further Russian escalation,” and also “emphasized the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.” Nikkei wrote that although North Korea’s test-firing of mid-range missiles was one of the reasons for releasing the joint statement, a possible Taiwan contingency and Russia’s likely invasion of Ukraine increased the need for the United States to join hands with Japan and South Korea to address a broader range of issues. Meanwhile, Yomiuri wrote that although the United States had hoped for rapprochement between Japan and South Korea, the Japan-ROK foreign ministerial held separately in Hawaii exposed the deep rift between the two nations over history issues.

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