South Korean and Japanese Government Must Consider Plan B
[Current Issues and Policies] No. 2020-07 (April 14, 2020)
Dr. JIN Chang Soo
Director of the Center for Japanese Studies,
The Sejong Institute
Voices concerning the ROK-Japan relations are constantly rising in both countries, but no improvement in relationship can be seen without the strong will of the leadership of two states. This deteriorated relationship has severely hurt citizens of two countries. Considering their hardships, the two governments have to propose a direction for a possible resolution if not exactly a feasible solution.
A prior task to solve issues related to victims of forced labor is a frank conversation among the government authorities, victims and their relevant communities. It is difficult to solve the forced labor issue without reflecting the voices of the victims. Given such circumstances, Seoul and Tokyo should refrain from being swayed by emotions and put their best effort to propose reasonable and strategic responses. To this end, when the execution of the liquidation of Japanese firms’ assets for the victims of forced labor becomes a reality, the two governments must come forward to narrow their confronting stances in order to avoid the worst possible Korea-Japan relations.
※ Translator’s note: This is a summarized unofficial translation of the original paper which was written in Korean. All references should be made to the original paper.
※ This article is written based on the author’s personal opinions and does not reflect the views of the Sejong Institute.