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Seoul-Washington-Tokyo summit planned during G7 meeting in UK

Seoul-Washington-Tokyo summit planned during G7 meeting in UK

Posted May. 17, 2021 08:57,   

Updated May. 17, 2021 08:57


A plan is being discussed and coordinated to hold a summit meeting among South Korea, the U.S. and Japan on the sidelines of the G7 meeting, which will take place in the U.K. next month, the Kyodo News Agency reported Sunday. There is a possibility for a ‘unofficial brief contact’ in lieu of an official summit between the leaders of South Korea and Japan, the news agency said.

According to KyodoNews and the Tokyo Shimbun, South Korea, the U.S., and Japan are discussing a plan to hold a tripartite summit on the occasion of the G7 meeting, which is scheduled in the U.K. on June 11-13. South Korea is not a G7 member state, but the U.K., which chairs this year’s summit, officially invited President Moon Jae-in to attend. If a Seoul-Washington-Tokyo summit actually takes place, it will be the first time since September 2017 when President Moon met with then U.S. President Donald Trump, and then Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly.

Washington is taking the lead in setting up a tripartite summit among South Korea, the U.S. and Japan. “The U.S. is positive, and Japan has no reason to reject,” a source in the Japanese government was quoted by Kyodo News as saying. The news agency also said an official in the South Korean government also commented, “We aim to hold (a three-country summit) timed with the G7 summit.”

U.S. President Joe Biden is expected to suggest South Korea and Japan strengthen cooperation among the three countries to seek North Korea’s denuclearization. There is also a chance the U.S. president could urge Seoul and Tokyo to improve their bilateral ties. Kyodo News also reported high-level exchanges among Seoul, Washington and Tokyo are picking up speed, with a meeting among the foreign ministries of the three countries convened in London on May 5, and a meeting among the national intelligence chiefs of the allies held in Tokyo on Wednesday last week. South Korea’s National Intelligence Service chief Park Jie-won’s close-door meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga during Park’s visit to Tokyo to attend the three-nation intelligence chiefs’ meeting could have been part of preparations to organize a summit among Seoul, Washington and Tokyo, Kyodo reported.