S. Korea Ready for Dialogue with Japan: Moon

Politics

Seoul, March 1 (Jiji Press)--South Korean President Moon Jae-in reiterated Monday that the country is always ready to hold dialogue with Japan.

"We have to concentrate more energy on future-oriented development (of South Korea-Japan relations) while resolving issues of the past separately," Moon said at a ceremony to mark the 102nd anniversary of the March 1, 1919, independence movement against Japanese colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula.

Seoul "is always ready to sit down and have talks with the Japanese government," he said. "I am confident that if we put our heads together in the spirit of trying to understand each other's perspectives, we will also be able to wisely resolve issues of the past."

Moon said that his country will not forget "the painful history," but that South Korea and Japan, one hundred years after the March 1 incident, have become "very important neighbors to each other" in the areas of the economy, culture and people-to-people exchanges. South Korea's economic growth has helped Japan's advancement, and vice versa, Moon said, adding, "Things will continue in this way going forward."

The "only obstacle" that the two countries must overcome is that "sometimes, issues of the past cannot be separated from those of the future but are intermingled with each other," Moon said, noting that "this has impeded forward-looking development."

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Jiji Press