Seoul's defense ministry unveiled plans to boost military ties with U.S., China and Japan

  • 5 years ago
한미공조 강화, 한중 한일 군교류 본격화: 국방위 업무보고

The nation's Defense Ministry laid out plans to boost military ties with the U.S.
Seoul will also meet with China and Japan to try and patch up strained relations through increased dialogue.
Kim Ji-yeon fill us in.
At a briefing held at the National Defense Committee on Monday, Minister of National Defense Jeong Kyeong-doo said he plans to hold a meeting in Washington with the U.S. defense chief early next month.
Minister Jeong and acting U.S. Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan are expected to touch on pending issues such as the transfer of wartime operational control.
Another highly anticipated topic are the combined military drills later this year and the allies' latest Dong Maeng joint exercise, which replaced the Key Resolve command post exercise.
They are also expected to discuss the security situation of the Korean peninsula post the Hanoi summit... and come up with follow-up measures.
South Korea is also having a joint army meeting with Japan this month.
This will be followed by a Seoul-Washington-Tokyo trilateral security meeting in May, with working-level talks also scheduled, which will likely focus on resolving strained Seoul-Tokyo ties stemming from naval disputes due to Tokyo's claims that a South Korean warship had used its targeting radar to lock onto a Japanese patrol plane.
The defense ministry also announced a ministerial-level meeting with China to take place for the first time in over a year-and-a-half in May... as part of efforts to promote communication and normalize relations after a diplomatic row stemming from Beijing's opposition to Seoul's decision to deploy the U.S. THAAD missile defense system.
South Korea and China will also hold a ceremony on April 3 to repatriate Chinese soldiers killed in the Korean War.
Regarding the North, the defense ministry says it'll hold working-level talks with its North Korean counterpart about carrying out the joint statement from the inter-Korean summit last September.
On whether North Korea is working on its nuclear programs, Minister Jeong said that South Korea is keeping a close watch on places in the North including the Dongchang-ri missile engine testing site.
He said it's too soon to say that suspected activity there is preparation for a missile test.
Kim Ji-yeon, Arirang News.