By Mei Jingya, Sina English
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Foreign ministers of Japan and S.Korea held a trilateral meeting in the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York on Friday, in which she urged Japan to respond carefully in addressing the territorial dispute with China.
At the outset of the trilateral meeting, Clinton reiterated Washington’s mutual interests with the two allies. This is the fourth three-way meeting in the last two years, with the latest one held on the sidelines of the ASEAN regional forum in Cambodia this summer.
"Our alliances with Japan and the Republic of Korea are cornerstones of peace and stability in the region," Clinton said.
The three-way talks include discussion on the DPRK nuclear issue as well as strengthening ties between the three allies.
Japan’s relations with S.Korea and China have deteriorated recently over island disputes. Clinton handled the sensitive territorial issues with great discretion.
Before the trilateral meeting, South Korean Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister Kim Sung Hwan met with Japanese foreign minister Koichiro Gemba on Sept. 27 at the UN headquarters. Kim reiterated S.Korea’s position on historical issues and expressed regret over Japanese PM Noda’s UN speech.
Gemba told Clinton that he and Kim failed to reach agreements on island dispute in a bilateral meeting but they agreed to have frequent contact.
Clinton reportedly made it clear that the United States has no intention to play a mediating role in any of territorial disputes in Asia, according to Kyodo.
U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Kurt Campbell expressed a similar view at a press conference in New York Friday.