New Japan PM to send envoys to South Korea amid territory dispute
SEOUL/TOKYO (REUTERS) - New Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will send envoys to meet South Korean President-elect Park Geun Hye next month, a spokeswoman for Ms Park said, a sign of Japan reaching out to its neighbour despite feuds over territory and wartime history.
Japan's relations with South Korea frayed badly in August after outgoing President Lee Myung Bak visited a disputed set of islands known as Takeshima in Japan and Dokdo in Korea. Koreans also harbour bitter resentment of Japanese rule from 1910 to 1945.
The hawkish Mr Abe, who wants to recast Japan's wartime history in less apologetic tones, led his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) to a landslide victory in the Dec 16 lower house election, putting the conservative party back in power after a three-year hiatus.
The spokeswoman did not say who the envoys will be, but Mr Abe told reporters last week that he planned to send former finance minister Fukushiro Nukaga "to improve and develop Japan-South Korea relations".