WASHINGTON (BLOOMBERG, REUTERS) - A trade dispute between South Korea and Japan is threatening to spiral out of control, and both governments want the White House on their side. Their private messaging has helped spark a reaction from the United States. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he would encourage Washington’s two biggest Asian allies Japan and South Korea "to find a path forward" from their diplomatic row when he meets their foreign ministers in Bangkok this week. "We will encourage them to find a path forward," he told reporters on Tuesday (July 30) aboard the plane en route to Bangkok. "They’re both great partners of ours. They’re both working closely with us on our effort to denuclearise North Korea. So if we can help them find a good place for each of the two countries, we’ll certainly find that important for the United States." Earlier, a senior American official told reporters that the US is urging South Korea and Japan to reach a … [Read more...] about Pompeo hopes to help patch up Japan-South Korea ties
Conflict between north and south korea
BANGKOK -- South Korea warned Japan on Thursday that it would be forced to review security cooperation between the two key US allies if Tokyo pushes ahead with plans to remove Seoul from its "white list" of trusted trade partners. The squabble between the East Asian neighbors follows a decades-long quarrel over Japanese forced labor during World War II. Japan last month unveiled tough restrictions on exports of chemicals vital to Seoul's world-leading chip and smartphone industry. Tokyo has also said it will remove South Korea from its preferential trade status as early as Friday, a move that could affect hundreds of key items imported to the South and punch a hole in its economy. Seoul's foreign minister Kang Kyung-wha met her Japanese counterpart Taro Kono on Thursday on the sidelines of a regional foreign ministers' meeting in Bangkok and urged Tokyo to walk back the move. "I made clear the grave consequences it would have on our bilateral relations if the measure was imposed," she … [Read more...] about South Korea warns Japan to drop ‘white list’ trade threat
Urusai (noisy)! I remembered the Japanese word often uttered by my mother when CNN reported that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had punished South Korean President Moon Jae-in by suddently restricting Japan’s pivotal exports to its neighbor. Japan occupied Korea for 35 years until 1945. Abe was apparently outraged with Moon’s repeated demands that Japan should pay more compensation for victims of forced labor and sex slavery. Japan insisted that it had paid all war obligations. Japan totally differed from Germany, which had officially and wholeheartedly apologized to all victims of Hitler’s crimes and paid all its obligations, including compensation for victims. Japan chose its own way to prove its remorse, but it was unacceptable for most of its former colonies. But no matter how firmly its former colonies demand fair settlement of the war impacts, Japan will stay stubborn. A compromise is also unlikely. Both PM Abe and President Moon, however, should … [Read more...] about Japan-South Korea quarrels annoying for neighbors
SEOUL (NYTIMES) - In the weeks before North Korea fired short-range projectiles on Saturday (May 4), United States President Donald Trump countermanded the Treasury Department, reversing an announcement that it was tightening economic sanctions against the country. The reason, his press secretary declared, was that "President Trump likes Chairman Kim and he doesn't think these sanctions will be necessary". Now, nearly a year after beginning a bold experiment in the power of personal diplomacy, Mr Trump has run headlong into its limits. He has discovered that friendship between leaders of bitter nuclear rivals may produce good television, but it is not a counterproliferation strategy. After gaining few tangible economic benefits from two summit meetings, the North's leader, Mr Kim Jong Un, is turning to a well-worn playbook written by his father and grandfather. On Saturday, the North fired a volley of projectiles off its east coast in a move that analysts said was intended to escalate … [Read more...] about North Korea revives old playbook with launch
By Thomas Walkom National Affairs Columnist Mon., April 29, 2019 Vladimir Putin has just made the North Korean situation more complicated. But the Russian president may have also opened up a new pathway to sidestep the current impasse between North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un and America’s Donald Trump. Putin has done this by the simple action of reinserting himself into the middle of the on-again off-again Korean nuclear crisis. His first-ever meeting with Kim last week in the Russian city of Vladivostok served as a signal that Moscow expects to be a part of any negotiations involving the Korean Peninsula. Up to now, Putin has lain low and let others take the lead. Russia has supported, in theory at least, U.S.-led sanctions aimed at forcing North Korea to end its nuclear missile program. At the same time, Moscow has supported Chinese efforts to try and end the conflict between Washington and Pyongyang on a step-by-step basis in which each side agrees to … [Read more...] about Will Putin help or hurt situation with North Korea?