South Korea on Wednesday offered talks with Japan in a bid to mend months of deteriorating ties between the two countries.
The offer by South Korea’s presidential office came after Tokyo’s removal of Seoul from its preferential trade whitelist of trustworthy partners became effective.
Japan has been pressuring South Korea through trade curbs in the wake of rulings by Seoul’s Supreme Court ordering Japanese firms to compensate victims of forced labor during Tokyo’s past colonial rule.
Seoul escalated their feud further last week by announcing it would not be renewing their bilateral military intelligence sharing agreement when it expires in November.
South Korea’s presidential office insisted it could reconsider last week’s decision if Tokyo retracts its trade curbs.
Meanwhile, Seoul’s Deputy National Security Adviser Kim Hyun-chong accused Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of treating the South like an “adversary.”
In comments carried by local news agency Yonhap, Kim added that the South Korean government “strongly regrets” Japan’s whitelist measure.