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Senior diplomats of S. Korea, China, Japan met ahead of trilateral summit

BEIJING -- Senior diplomats from South Korea, China and Japan met in the southwestern Chinese city of Chengdu last week to prepare for the countries' trilateral summit later this month, China's foreign ministry said Sunday.

During the talks Friday among Seoul's Deputy Foreign Minister Kim Gunn, Beijing's Vice Foreign Minister Luo Zhaohui and Tokyo's Senior Deputy Foreign Minister Takeo Mori, the officials exchanged opinions regarding the preparations for the upcoming summit, according to the ministry.

President Moon Jae-in, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are set to hold a three-way summit in Chengdu on Dec. 24 to discuss cooperation on a range of issues that likely include peace efforts with North Korea.


The three sides also shared the need for close trilateral cooperation, it added.

The upcoming summit comes amid heightened tensions on the Korean Peninsula caused by growing concerns over North Korea's provocative actions, such as the launch of an inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM), as the year-end deadline that Pyongyang set for Washington to come up with new proposals to move their talks forward is drawing near.

North Korea on Saturday said it carried out "another crucial test" the previous day that will bolster its "reliable strategic nuclear deterrent," following the first such test on Dec. 7.

Experts believe that the communist country appears to have conducted high-thrust rocket engine tests for long-range missiles or satellites. (Yonhap)