Major Japanese media outlets criticized the Shinzo Abe administration’s strengthened export control on Korea once again on Saturday.
In an opinion titled “Are Japan and Korea in conflict destroying exchanges?,” the Asahi Shimbun reported that half a century passed since Korea and Japan tied diplomatic relations, which were currently entering the worst and the most dangerous area. “Numerous exchanges of local governments and civic organizations are halted,” the article also said. “The Abe administration’s export control would undermine Korea’s economy and it would also affect Japanese industries.” It emphasized that Japan should withdraw the current export control, which can leave a crucial wound in the relations between the two countries.”
The Mainichi Shimbun reported that excluding Korea from the “white list” was a very unusual response and warned that it could trigger utterly different level of conflicts from the past by putting the Korea-Japan relations at a historical crossroads. “There is no need to say that South Korea has to wipe out security concerns, but the Japanese government should refrain from excessive trade limits,” the Nikkei argued.
In the meantime, conservative Yomiuri Shimbun asserted in an opinion article titled “Why does Korea ignore reality?,” “South Korea’s emotional responses cannot be condoned but Japan should take a sober assessment of the situation based on facts.”