August 1, 2019
Bangkok--Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and his Vietnamese counterpart, Pham Binh Minh, agreed Wednesday to work together in response to China's growing military presence in the South China Sea.
At their meeting in Bangkok, Kono and Minh, who doubles as deputy prime minister of Vietnam, also confirmed cooperation over North Korea's nuclear and missile development, and its abductions of Japanese nationals decades ago.
They agreed to deepen collaboration at a series of foreign ministers' meetings related to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in the Thai capital this week.
Kono sought Vietnam's cooperation for realizing a free and open Indo-Pacific region, a vision proposed by Japan.
Vietnam is in charge of coordination between Japan and ASEAN this year, and is set to serve as next year's chair of the regional bloc. Jiji Press
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