Japan’s Yomiuri Shimbun reported on the 20th that “The Japanese government has decided to consider holding a summit of four countries, Korea, Japan, Australia and New Zealand, taking advantage of the NATO summit as an opportunity.”
Yomiuri said, “Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand, who were invited to the NATO Summit to be held in Madrid, Spain on the 29th and 30th, will hold a four-nation summit to oppose unilateral attempts to change the status quo in the East and South China Seas with China in mind. He is expected to announce his intentions.”
He also predicted that “a plan to support the Pacific island countries where China is expanding its influence will also be on the agenda for the talks.”
Yomiuri said, “The purpose is to promote a ‘free and open Indo-Pacific’ by confirming cooperation between the heads of four countries that are NATO’s Asia-Pacific partners. There is also,” he analyzed.
The ‘free and open Indo-Pacific’ is a initiative promoted by the United States and Japan to contain China’s maritime advances.
The NATO summit will also be attended by the heads of 30 member countries, as well as leaders of partner countries such as President Yoon Seok-yeol, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanage, and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihiko Isozaki said at a press conference on the same day that “nothing has been decided at this stage” when asked if the four-nation summit would be held.
Yomiuri said that a high-ranking Japanese government official said that “the environment was not created” regarding the success of the Korea-Japan summit on the occasion of the NATO summit.
However, it is reported that there is a possibility that the leaders of South Korea and Japan will hold an informal meeting for a short time or talk while standing.
President Yoon met with reporters on the way to work at the Yongsan Presidential Office on the 15th and said, “It is difficult to confirm the diplomatic issue before it is decided,” and “nothing has been confirmed.”
When asked about the possibility of a Korea-Japan summit meeting, Prime Minister Kishida also said at a press conference on the same day, “Nothing has been decided.”
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