Kono, Kang Discuss Wartime Labor Rulings

Kono, Kang discuss wartime labor rulings

The foreign ministers of Japan and South Korea have held phone talks amid strained ties over the South Korean Supreme Court's rulings on wartime labor.

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha spoke for about 30 minutes before noon on Wednesday.

The top diplomats exchanged views on the South Korean top court's rulings ordering Japanese companies to compensate Korean men who say they were forced to work at factories in Japan during World War Two.

Kono reportedly again urged the South Korean government to take action, saying that any right to seek compensation was settled completely and finally in 1965, when the two countries normalized ties and agreed on the issue of claims and economic cooperation.

In the telephone talks, the 2 ministers agreed to continue efforts to smooth out bilateral communication.

It was first for the 2 to talk since Kono demanded that the South Korean government take resolute action following the Supreme Court's first ruling in October.