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An Eye to the Future of Japan-South Korea Relations

by Scott A. Snyder
July 23, 2012

South Korea's Defense Minister Kim shakes hands with Japan's Defense Minister Kitazawa before their meeting in Seoul (Pool/courtesy Reuters) South Korea's Defense Minister Kim shakes hands with Japan's Defense Minister Kitazawa before their meeting in Seoul (Pool/courtesy Reuters)

South Korea’s Democratic United Party (DUP) failed yesterday in its motion to dismiss South Korea’s Prime Minister Kim Hwang-sik for the Lee Myung-bak administration’s handling of the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) with Japan last month. South Korean public opposition not only forced the Lee administration to suspend the signing of this GSOMIA, but also cost the administration the resignation of one senior official. Despite the Lee administration already shelving its controversial plans to pursue cooperation with Japan, this being an election year, the DUP aimed to impose a higher political cost.

At the request of CFR’s Program on U.S.-Korea Policy, Pacific Forum CSIS’s Ralph Cossa, a long-time supporter of Japan-ROK cooperation, has written here on how and why the failure to pass this GSOMIA is a setback for both Japan and South Korea, as well as for the United States.

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