US Defence Secretary urges renewal of GSOMIA between Japan-South Korea

Bangkok [Thailand], Nov 18 (ANI): US Defence Secretary Mark Esper has urged Seoul to renew Japan-South Korea General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA), which expires on November 23.

Sputnik reported that Esper claimed, the termination of the pact would only benefit North Korea and China.

Sputnik reported that while speaking to reporters in Bangkok, Esper, after his separate talks with Defence Minister of Japan and South Korea, said GSOMIA is "very important" for timely and effective decision-making in case of emergency and urged both sides to "take a step forward", resolve the problem and resuscitate the agreement.

"Expiration of GSOMIA will have an impact on our effectiveness, so we urge all sides to sit down and work through their differences," Sputnik quoted him as saying.

Meanwhile, The Japan Times reported that the "defence ministers of Japan and South Korea made no progress on Sunday on stopping the expiry of their military intelligence-sharing pact, considered crucial to reducing the threat posed by North Korean missiles and nuclear weapons."

A Japanese official was quoted as saying that the Japanese Defence Minister Taro Kono and his South Korean counterpart Jeong Kyeong-doo, during their 40-minute meeting in Bangkok, "only stated their respective stances."

The Japanese Defence Minister also urged South Korea to reconsider its decision to end GSOMIA which came into force three years ago. (ANI)