The Yomiuri ShimbunThe Japanese and U.S. governments have begun final arrangements for trilateral talks between the defense ministers of Japan, the United States and South Korea, as well as between the defense ministers of Japan, the United States and Australia, to coincide with the Asian Security Summit in Singapore on June 2-4, according to sources.
The Asian Security Summit is a multilateral conference organized by the International Institute for Strategic Studies, a private research organization in Britain. Defense ministers, military experts and others from the Asia-Pacific region as well as Europe and the United States take part in the summit.
Given North Korea’s recent nuclear weapon and missile development, a policy of close cooperation to counter the North Korean threat will likely be included in joint statements to be drafted at each trilateral meeting.
Both trilateral meetings are scheduled for June 3. Scheduled to attend are Defense Minister Tomomi Inada, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, South Korean Defense Minister Han Min Koo and Australian Defense Minister Marise Payne.
They will be the first trilateral defense ministers meetings conducted under the administrations of U.S. President Donald Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae In.
At the talks, the defense ministers will jointly condemn North Korea for its repeated provocations, including Sunday’s launch of the new Pukguksong-2 intermediate-range ballistic missile, which has a range of 2,000 kilometers. In line with the consistent implementation of U.N. Security Council resolutions and other measures, they will reaffirm the policy to tighten the international community’s encirclement of North Korea.