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Japan, SKorea lawmakers meet to ease row over trade, history

Posted at 6:51 AM, Jul 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-31 09:51:30-04

TOKYO (AP) — A delegation of lawmakers from Japan and South Korea met in a bid to ease their countries’ worsening dispute over trade and history, but ended up repeating demands to each other.

The South Korean side Wednesday urged Japan not to downgrade their country from a preferred status with simplified export procedures. Japan’s Cabinet is to approve the measure Friday.

Japan says the measure is needed to prevent misuse of sensitive materials and that Seoul has undermined Tokyo’s trust, including export controls. The Japanese lawmakers repeated Japan’s demands that Seoul not force Japanese companies to compensate wartime Korean laborers by violating the 1965 bilateral agreement that settled wartime compensation issues.

South Korean lawmakers said they plan to seek a way to resolve the Korean laborers’ issue at an upcoming national assembly.