President Moon Jae-in ordered officials on Wednesday to explore to “actively consider all potential actions including filing a case to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea” to stop Japan from discharging radioactive water into the sea,” according to presidential spokesman Kang Min-seok. Potential actions refer to provisionary measures to prevent Japan from dumping contaminated water into the sea in order to protect rights of dispute stakeholders until the Tribunal reaches a final decision.
The Secretary to the President for Legal Affairs started to explore legal reviews in line with President Moon’s orders. Such an action is contrary to the government’s previous stance just a day earlier, saying that “filing a case to the Tribunal would be determined after data collection.” The government appears to be wary of public criticism on its actions.
President Moon also raised the issue at the appointment ceremony for Kōichi Aiboshim, the Japanese Ambassador to Korea, which was held at the Blue House on that day, by saying, “This is a critical issue that should be brought up. Korea is very much concerned about Japan’s decision to discharge radioactive water, as it is geographically closest and shares the sea. I know you would be well aware of the concerns of the Korean government and people, please share these concerns with the Japanese government.”
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