Japanese lawmakers urged South Korea to find a solution to the historical dispute over the compensation of victims of forced labor during Japan's colonial rule of Korea, reaffirming its stance that the 1965 treaty normalizing bilateral relations between Seoul and Tokyo settled all compensation issues.
At the 42nd annual session of the South Korean and Japanese Parliamentarian's Union on Friday Fukushiro Nukaga, the chief of the Japanese side of the union said that the reason behind the current Seoul-Tokyo crisis is the South Korean Supreme Court's ruling that ordered Japanese firms to compensate Korean plaintiffs in 2018.
Japanese lawmakers also claimed that the compensation issue should be resolved first in order to solve other issues such as the military-information sharing pact and Japan's trade restrictions with Korea.
His South Korean counterpart Kang Chang-il of the ruling Democratic Party, said that the compensation of wartime victims should be solved through continuous dialogue and that it should be treated with sensitivity.
He added that Japan's latest trade curbs go against international free trade rules, and that the two sides should put themselves in each other's shoes to narrow their differences.
Meanwhile, South Korea's National Assembly speaker Moon Hee-sang, who will embark on a four day trip to Japan from Sunday, is not likely to hold a one-on-one with his Japanese counterpart during his stay.
The president of Japan's House of Councilors, Akiko Santo, refused to meet with Moon on the sidelines of a meeting of parliamentary speakers of the G20 countries on Monday.
Local sources say Santo made the decision as she demanded an official apology and a withdrawal of Moon's remarks in February, after the South Korean speaker called for the Japanese Emperor to apologize to the so-called 'comfort women' to solve the historical dispute.
She claimed that Moon's previous letter of apology sent in June was not enough and that she requested another apology.
But since she hasn't heard from Moon since, a meeting will not be possible next week.
Kim Mok-yeon, Arirang News.