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Japan asks for S. Korea's cooperation for G-20 summit

The top Japanese envoy in Seoul asked for South Korea's cooperation for a successful Group of 20 summit in Japan, South Korea's finance ministry said Monday.

Japan's Ambassador to South Korea Yasumasa Nakamine made the request in a meeting with Hong Nam-ki, minister of economy and finance, at a government building in Seoul, according to the ministry.

The summit, set for June 28-29 in Osaka, Japan, will bring together leaders of the Group of 20 advanced and emerging economies, including South Korea.

Ambassador Yasumasa Nakamine (Japanese Embassy)
Ambassador Yasumasa Nakamine (Japanese Embassy)

Hong said he hopes that the summit will produce progress in discussions on such issues as aging populations and global imbalances, the ministry said.

Hong also said South Korea will cooperate with Japan for a successful G-20 summit in Japan, according to the ministry.

The meeting comes amid chilled relations between Seoul and Tokyo over South Korean Supreme Court rulings last year that ordered Japanese firms to compensate South Korean victims of forced labor during its 1910-45 colonization of the Korean Peninsula.

The top court has recognized victims' rights to claim damages, but Tokyo maintains that all reparation issues stemming from its colonial rule were settled under a 1965 government-to-government accord that normalized bilateral relations.

South Korea and Japan are close economic partners and key allies of the United States, though they have long been in conflict over territory and other historical disputes stemming from Japan's brutal colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula. (Yonhap)