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S. Korea, Japan hold talks on survey near disputed islets

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Seoul, June 3 (Ajit Weekly News) Diplomats from South Korea and Japan held working-level talks in Seoul to discuss bilateral relations, including the maritime survey near disputed islets and release of radioactive waste water, into the ocean from Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant.

Lee Sang-ryol, Director-General for Asian and Pacific Affairs at the South Korean Foreign Ministry, met in Seoul with his Japanese counterpart Takehiro Funakosh on Thursday.

They reaffirmed views that the two countries need to rapidly improve bilateral ties, exchanging opinions on issues of mutual concerns such as the exchange of personnel, Xinhua news agency reported.

Regarding the maritime survey conducted by South Korea in its eastern waters near the disputed islets of Dokdo, called Takeshima in Japan, Lee stressed that Dokdo is the inherent South Korean territory historically, geographically and by international law.

Lee told the Japanese diplomat that the South Korean government can not accept any issue raised by the Japanese side over Seoul’s legitimate activity done in accordance with the international law and domestic laws.

The Korea Hydrographic and Oceanographic Agency was forecast to continue its maritime survey near Dokdo until June 18.

Meanwhile, Director General-level officials of South Korea and Japan held a separate video conference earlier on Thursday to discuss issues on the handling of radioactive waste water from Japan’s crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

With relevant government officials in attendance, the two sides virtually held a briefing and a question-and-answer session over the safety of Japan’s plan to dump the nuclear waste water into the Pacific Ocean.

While expressing its concerns about the plan, South Korea urged the Japanese side to take responsible measures that are safe from scientific perspective and comply with international laws and standards.

The two sides agreed to continue communication and consultations on the issue.

The Japanese government planned to release nearly 1.25 million tons of nuclear waste water from Fukushima nuclear plant into the ocean spanning 30 years from 2023.

–Ajit Weekly News

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