ROK, Japan to hold defense ministers' talks next week

Updated: 2015-10-16 10:34


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SEOUL - Defense chiefs of the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Japan have planned to hold a bilateral dialogue next week in Seoul to discuss the nuclear and missile program of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and security bills passed in Japanese parliament last month.

The ROK's defense ministry said on Friday that Japanese Defense Minister Gen Nakatani will arrive in Seoul on Oct 20 for a three-day visit, the first to Seoul by a Japanese defense minister since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took office in December 2012.

The last visit by Japan's defense chief to the ROK was made in January 2011.

Nakatani will hold talks with his ROK counterpart Han Min-Koo on the first day of his travel to discuss issues of mutual interest, including the DPRK's nuclear and missile threats, defense cooperation and situations on the Korean peninsula.

Also on the dialogue agenda will be the passage of security legislations in Japanese parliament in September that allows its Self-Defense Forces to fight abroad for its allies, especially the United States.

The ROK has insisted that Tokyo should win advance consent from Seoul to let its troops deployed on the soil of the Korean Peninsula.

During the visit, Nakatani will attend the ADEX 2015 defense exhibition, hosted by the ROK, and will visit the truce village of Panmunjom in the inter-Korean land border before coming back to Tokyo on Oct 22.