"In the current difficult security situation in East Asia, relations between Japan and South Korea are extremely important. South Korea is an important neighbor", Shinzo Abe told reporters today after a meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in at a trilateral hosted by China.
"Our relationship is one that cannot be made distant, even if there is temporarily an uncomfortable issue", Moon apparently told his Japanese counterpart.
The two countries remain at odds. An age-old conflict tied to conscripted labor and “comfort women” spiraled out of control earlier this year, dead-ending in the most acute bilateral crisis in decades and threatening to undermine Washington’s efforts to present a united front against North Korea. Now that Donald Trump's honeymoon with Kim is over and Pyongyang is back to making bombastic military threats, it's seen as advisable that Tokyo and Seoul get back on the same page.
A resolution to the dispute is also key to ensuring the tiff doesn't continue to exacerbate the trade situation and threaten to further upend the global technology supply chain.
Over the summer, Tokyo decided to force Japanese businesses to obtain licenses to export h
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