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South Korea, US, Japan step up cooperation over N Korea missile launches

They also expressed concerns about the ongoing outbreak of COVID-19 in North Korea.

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Seoul: South Korea, United States and Japan condemning North Korea’s latest ballistic missile launches, on Thursday agreed to step up trilateral cooperation in dealing with the issue.

S Korea’s first vice foreign minister Cho Hyun-dong and his American and Japanese counterparts, Wendy Sherman and Takeo Mori, respectively, held phone talks a day after North Korea fired three missiles, shortly after US President Joe Biden wrapped up his alliance-boosting trip to Seoul and Tokyo, Yonhap news agency reported.

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They noted the North’s provocation, its 17th show of force this year, was a clear violation of multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions and agreed to bolster cooperation among the regional powers on follow-up measures, the agency reported citing Seoul’s foreign ministry.

They also expressed concerns about the ongoing outbreak of COVID-19 in North Korea.

Sherman reaffirmed Washington’s “ironclad commitment” to ensure security of its Asian allies, while leaving the door open to engage Pyongyang in “sustained and sincere dialogue,” the US State Department said in a separate statement.

Sherman called on N Korea to cease “its unlawful and destabilizing behavior” and instead engage in sustained and sincere dialogue, the statement added.

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