U.S. Envoy Calls for Resolution to Japan-S. Korea Tensions
Tokyo, July 2 (Jiji Press)--U.S. Ambassador to Japan William Hagerty expressed hope on Tuesday for a "resolution" to strained ties between Japan and South Korea.
"We look forward to a resolution (to Japan-South Korea tensions) so that we can continue to remain focused," Hagerty said in a lecture held in Tokyo by the Research Institute of Japan, a Jiji Press affiliate.
"The success that we enjoy in this region, from a defense and security standpoint, is accelerated by the strong trilateral partnership with Japan, South Korea and the U.S.," the ambassador said. "I think that our success in dealing with the regime in North Korea has been strengthened by our strong partnership and resolve."
He applauded diplomatic efforts to cool tensions between the East Asian neighbors, which have flared in recent months after the South Korean Supreme Court ordered Japanese companies last year to pay compensation to Korean laborers requisitioned before and during World War II.
It is believed to be the first comment by a U.S. senior official on Japan-South Korea relations since Japan announced on Monday tighter controls on semiconductor material exports to South Korea in effective retaliation over the issue of wartime labor.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]