July 18 (UPI) — Japan said there are no issues with South Korea’s proposal to North Korea for military level talks.
Japanese chief cabinet secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters at a regular press briefing on Tuesday the talks pose no conflict with a policy of continued pressure on North Korea.
“It is my understanding the Korean government’s proposal is aimed at reuniting separated families and stopping hostile acts along the military demarcation line,” Suga said. “I do not think it will pose a problem for increasing pressure on the North, or the policy of Japan, the United States and Korea.”
On Monday South Korea announced plans for talks between the two armies, a move, according to Seoul, that could help “stop all hostile actions which heighten military tensions at the border.”
Following the announcement, the White House said the conditions for such talks may not be present.
The White House spokesman said the questions should be referred back to the Korean government, then added, “That being said, I think the president has made clear in the past with respect that any type of conditions that would have to be met are clearly far away from where we are now.”
South Korea has proposed military talks at the border for Friday, and the South Korean Red Cross has called for a meeting on Aug. 1 at Panmunjom, News 1 reported.
In separate statements, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida initially expressed reservations regarding potential talks, during a visit to New York Monday. He then later said the proposed inter-Korea summit is “not in conflict or in contradiction” with pressure from the three countries.
North Korea has not responded to the South’s proposal for dialogue.