Sunday, 20 October, 2019

Tension Between South Korea and Japan

Japanese minister admonishes South Korea's envoy as row escalates Man sets himself on fire outside embassy offices
Patty Aguilar | 22 July, 2019, 03:44

It also said it plans to remove South Korea from a whitelist of 27 countries that receive preferential treatment for trade with Japan.

In his speech, Kim Hyun Jung also commented on Tokyo imposed export restrictions, calling them "contrary to the principles of the world trade organization and the statements voiced at the G20 summit in Osaka". "It will include all the grounds and evidence that can back the stance of the Korean government", said an official of the Industry Ministry.

South Korea accused Japan of violating worldwide law with its curbs this month on the export of high-tech materials to South Korean chipmaking giants, which could disrupt global supply chains.

The Yomiuri Shimbun reported that the South Korean president did so in order to solve the issue with the United States, which puts much emphasis on security cooperation among the United States, South Korea and Japan.

He also spoke to the acquaintance on phone, saying he would start the fire because of his ill feeling towards Japan, the report said, citing police officials.

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"What South Korea is now doing is tantamount to overturning the worldwide order after World War II. It is bad manners to pretend not to know that".

The export curbs could hurt global technology companies. The ministry had asked Japan to engage in high-level talks before July 24th, the last day Japan is accepting feedback, but it now seems that a response is unlikely.

A Seoul fire official said a 78-year-old man, surnamed Kim, drove up to the Japanese embassy early on Friday, stopped in front of the entrance and set fire to his vehicle while in it. Kim's family told the police that the man's father-in-law had been forcibly taken to Japan to work during World War II.

Many South Koreans are boycotting Japanese products and services, from beer to clothes and travel, disrupting businesses already grappling with the worst economic conditions in a decade. The newspaper also said that the South Korean government may put pressure on its Japanese counterpart with the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA), which expires on August 24, regarding the Japanese government's plan to exclude South Korea from its so-called white list.

The Japanese government is soliciting opinion from the public until this coming Wednesday before it decides whether or not to take South Korea off of its whitelist of trading partners.

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