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Seoul, March 21 – South Korea on Tuesday informed Japan of its decision to fully restore a military intelligence-sharing deal, as part of efforts to thaw long-frozen bilateral ties, the Foreign Ministry said.
South Korea sent an official letter to Japan earlier in the day via diplomatic channels informing of its decision to rescind its suspension of the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA), Yonhap News Agency reported citing the Ministry as saying
Signed in 2016, GSOMIA was seen as a rare symbol of security cooperation between Seoul and Tokyo before the former administration of President Moon Jae-in decided to terminate it in 2019 in protest of Tokyo’s export restrictions against Seoul.
The decision was later put on hold, but the amount of information sharing between the neighbouring countries is thought to have been limited, as their relations remained strained over disputes stemming from Japan’s 1910-45 colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula.
Last week, President Yoon Suk-yeol agreed to “completely normalise” GSOMIA during a summit meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to better respond to North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats.
Earlier Tuesday, Yoon said that bilateral relations between the two nations must leave the past behind and move forward.
“Korea-Japan relations must move beyond the past,” Yoon told a Cabinet meeting. “Korea-Japan relations can and must be a win-win relationship that works together and gains more together.”
Yoon also said relations with Japan “are not a zero-sum relationship”.