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Joint chiefs of staff of S. Korea, U.S., Japan meet in Hawaii

Joint chiefs of staff of S. Korea, U.S., Japan meet in Hawaii

Posted May. 01, 2021 07:25,   

Updated May. 01, 2021 07:25


The Joint Chiefs of Staff of South Korea, the U.S. and Japan have expressed concern about North Korea’s nuclear and missile threat and reaffirmed the importance of trilateral cooperation among the countries. The U.S. and Japan stressed the importance of pledges to deter the North’s expansion and sanctions against the Stalinist country to counter Pyongyang’s nuclear threats, while South Korea placed emphasis on peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula, which prompted critics to suggest the three sides might have shown subtle differences in views.

South Korean Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Won In-choul held a meeting with his U.S. counterpart Mark Milley and Japanese counterpart Koji Yamazaki in Hawaii on Friday. The military leaders of the three countries have met for the first time in 18th months since they gathered in Washington in October 2019 when MIlley was inaugurated. The three military leaders reportedly shared concern about the North’s nuclear and missile programs, and discussed the importance of following rules based on international order within the region. “They eval‎uated the threat of the improved North Korean version of the Iskander (KN-23) missile, which Pyongyang launched in March, and a new submarine launched ballistic missile, and the situation surrounding its construction of a new submarine,” a South Korean military source said.

Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said that the U.S. is prepared to mobilize all military capabilities to deter proliferation, while reaffirming Washington’s robust commitment to defend South Korea and Japan, while Koji Yamazaki, Chief of Staff, Joint Staff of the Japan Self-Defense Forces, stressed thorough implementation of U.N. Security Council resolutions on sanctions against the North.

The U.S. and Japan have renewed their commitment to counter militarily and diplomatically the escalating nuclear threat from North Korea. Gen. Won also emphasized the importance of trilateral cooperation to ensure peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and Northeast Asia.

Sang-Ho Yun ysh1005@donga.com