Wed, 28 Jun 2000

The Korean summit

We must keep in mind that the dialogue between South and North Korea has just begun and could be severed at any time. However, the possibility of rapid development in the relationship beyond the expectations of the countries in the region also exists.

The talks could also lead to changes in military arrangements in the region. Rapid progress in the dialogue between the two Koreas could have an impact on the U.S. military presence in the region and on the Japan-U.S. security framework.

Tokyo must grasp the significance of this accord and develop an appropriate response as it pursues normalization discussions with North Korea.

The accord between the two Koreas will increase the pressure on Japan to achieve progress in negotiations with North Korea. And many South Koreans have been urging Japan to provide capital to further economic exchanges with North Korea.

However, we support the Japanese government's practical and principled approach to its negotiations with Pyongyang and hope that it stays on track.

-- The Mainichi Shimbun, Tokyo