Japan “extremely disappointed” by S Korea summit comments

In Other News - November 8th, 2013

Japan is “extremely disappointed” over remarks made by South Korea president Park Geun-hye in which she said she saw no point in a summit with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato said Japan would continue to seek to build cooperation with Seoul despite the letdown.

“We are extremely disappointed that concerns were expressed in this interview,” Kato said pertaining to Park’s interview with the BBC.

“Japan has been explaining to the South Korean side our position over past issues such as perceptions on history and comfort women, and we’ve asked them to accept it,” Kato told reporters.

Citing Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, he also said a summit should be held “exactly because there are problems.”

South Korea is “an important neighbor that shares with us basic values and interests,” Kato added.

Park said a potential summit would get the two Asian nations nowhere unless Japan changes its stance on issues and must apologize for its war-time “wrong doings”.

“If Japan continues to stick to the same historical perceptions and repeat its past comments, then what purpose would a summit serve? Perhaps it would be better not to have one,” Park told the BBC.

The two remained at odds over sovereignty of a group of islands, called Takeshima by Tokyo and Dokdo by Seoul.

By Maesie Bertumen

Image of the disputed islands: Republic of Korea/Flickr