Yoon meets Japanese political leaders, voices hope for stronger cooperation
By Lee Haye-ah
TOKYO, March 17 (Yonhap) -- President Yoon Suk Yeol met Friday with Japanese political leaders, including the chief of the main opposition party, and voiced hope for stronger cooperation between the two countries' peoples, his office said.
Yoon, who arrived in Tokyo the previous day for a summit with Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, held a meeting with members of three groups promoting friendly ties between South Korea and Japan, including the Japan-Korea Parliamentarians' Union and the Japan-Korea Cooperation Committee.
"President Yoon stressed that his visit to Japan is the first step toward normalizing the bilateral relationship, as the first bilateral visit at the leader level in 12 years," the presidential office said.
"He also said that as the leaders of the two countries reaffirmed their mutual commitment to improving and developing the South Korea-Japan relationship, he hopes that the positive mood will lead to a strengthening of the friendship and cooperation between the two countries' peoples," it said.
In attendance were former Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso, vice president of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and head of the Japan-Korea Cooperation Committee, and former Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, the incoming chief of the Japan-Korea Parliamentarians' Union, among others.
Yoon later met with Kenta Izumi, leader of the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party, and Natsuo Yamaguchi, leader of Komeito, the junior coalition partner of the Liberal Democratic Party.
Izumi said his party has established an in-house Korea-Japan parliamentarians' alliance and that he will visit South Korea in the near future to meet with South Korean opposition politicians and seek their cooperation for a future cooperative relationship between South Korea and Japan, the presidential office said.
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