UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon praised the leaders of China, Japan and South Korea for the trilateral summit they held on Sunday, and urged them to work closely together to promote mutual trust and cooperation.
On Sunday, the first in three years high-level tripartite summit between Japan, South Korea and China began in Seoul. It was attended by the Japanese Prime Minister, the South Korean President and the Chinese Premier of the State Council.
“The Secretary-General warmly welcomes the trilateral Summit Meeting held between the Republic of Korea, Japan and China on 1 November in Seoul. He lauds the three leaders —Premier Li Keqiang of the People’s Republic of China, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan and particularly President Park Geun-hye of the Republic of Korea, who hosted the meeting – for resuming trilateral meetings in three and half years,” the UN said in a Sunday statement.
The summit was initially an annual meeting, but in recent years, Japan’s relations with South Korea, which was under Tokyo’s colonial rule between 1910 and 1945, were strained over territorial disputes and controversies in interpretations of wartime history.
Ban also expressed hope that the resumption of the trilateral meeting format will reinforce the collaboration among the three countries, and boost cooperation in Northeast Asia.
The previous China–Japan–South Korea summit was held in Chinese capital of Beijing in May 2012.
The sides restarted their trilateral foreign ministers’ meeting in spring. In June, the three states consciously considered holding the summit, between September and November either in Seoul, Busan or on Jeju Island in South Korea.