Trilateral S. Korea, US, Japan summit in the works

By Choi He-suk
  • Published : Sept 13, 2017 - 17:59
  • Updated : Sept 13, 2017 - 18:01
A trilateral summit meeting of South Korean, Japanese and US leaders is being negotiated, Cheong Wa Dae revealed Wednesday. Seoul’s presidential office also revealed that Seoul and Washington have also discuss the possibility of US President Donald Trump making a state visit to South Korea in November.

According to a Cheong Wa Dae official, the three governments have been discussing holding a trilateral summit on the sidelines of the upcoming United Nations General Assembly set to take place later this month in New York.

The revelation comes a day after the UN Security Council adopted a new resolution on North Korea. Although measures for limiting Pyongyang’s oil supply were included for the first time, critics here have raised concerns that they were too weak to have any real effect on the regime’s nuclear ambitions.

The initial draft drawn up by Washington called for a complete oil embargo on North Korea. Seoul and Tokyo had supported the plans, and South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in had unsuccessfully attempted to win the support of Russia – Pyongyang’s second largest source of oil – during the recent summit with President Vladimir Putin in Vladivostok. 

President Moon Jae-in, US President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (from L to R) pose for a photo during a trilateral meeting held in July on the sidelines of a Group of 20 summit. (Yonhap)

In the wake of North Korea’s sixth nuclear weapons test on Sept. 3, Seoul has been seeking closer collaboration with the US, and Japan in pressuring the Kim Jong-un regime.

Moon and Trump had agreed to meet on the sidelines of the UN event, which begins on Sept. 19, during their telephone conversation on Sept. 4.

In their telephone conversation Sept. 4, Moon and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe stressed the need for closer trilateral cooperation. The two met again on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum on Sept. 7, where they reiterated the need for stronger measures.

As for Trump’s possible visit to Seoul, the Cheong Wa Dae official said the visit would be included the US president’s itinerary for his trip to China, should the two sides reach an agreement.

According to news reports, Trump is set to visit China in November, when he is expected to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation and Association of South East Asian Nations summits in Vietnam and the Philippines.

By Choi He-suk (