News analysis

Will the warm ties between Japan, China and South Korea last?

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (centre), at the trilateral summit with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (fourth from left) and South Korean President Moon Jae In (fourth from right), in Tokyo on Wednesday. While the talks were meaningful, the expected
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (centre), at the trilateral summit with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang (fourth from left) and South Korean President Moon Jae In (fourth from right), in Tokyo on Wednesday. While the talks were meaningful, the expected broad outcomes on North Korea and free trade bore few specifics and implied that the nations remain divided on the way forward, said one analyst.PHOTO: REUTERS

United front a positive step but countries remain riven by many longstanding issues

The leaders of Japan, China and South Korea made a grand show of their unity on Wednesday.

They made a significant first step towards even warmer ties, but it bears remembering their countries remain riven by differences, many of them longstanding ones.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 11, 2018, with the headline 'Will the warm ties between Japan, China and S. Korea last?'. Print Edition | Subscribe