Japan, South Korea, and China Conduct Trilateral Meeting in Seoul

There was a “restart and a new beginning” with ties between the Asian nations when South Korean, Japanese, and Chinese leaders finally met after much anticipation. 

For the first time since 2019, the three heads of state convened in Seoul on May 26 and 27. 

Yoon Suk-yeol, president of South Korea, met with the guests individually before hosting a trilateral summit. His staff had organized many bilateral sessions. A primary goal of South Korean foreign policy was to improve the country’s image as a “global pivotal state,” which was his stated goal. Significance and concrete results were praised by the South Korean Foreign Ministry, which also pledged to resume talks aimed at achieving a free trade agreement between the two countries. In addition, the leaders have decided to meet once a year going forward.

On Monday, the leaders of Japan, South Korea, and China will gather for their first trilateral summit in almost four years. The goal is to repair their long-complicated relations, which are crucial to maintaining peace in the area. Although analysts predicted that the summit in Seoul would not produce any significant results, they did note that the resumption of the nations’ top-level yearly meeting was encouraging collaboration among the three Northeast Asian neighbors.

North Korea’s main ally and economic conduit, China, has long been asked by the United States, Japan, and South Korea to use its influence to convince North Korea to give up its nuclear aspirations. On the other hand, China is believed to be secretly delivering help to North Korea, its poor neighbor, in order to evade U.N. sanctions.

An already tense situation on the Korean Peninsula might get much worse. The Japanese coast guard announced Monday that North Korea had notified them of a plan to launch a satellite by early next week. This is probably a reference to the North’s efforts to launch its second military spy satellite. 

At Monday’s summit, the delicate subjects concerning China will not be addressed. The presidents’ discussion on cooperation in areas including people-to-people exchanges, climate change, commerce, health concerns, technology, and disaster responses will be included in a joint statement following Monday’s trilateral summit, according to officials in South Korea, the meeting’s host.