Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday met with South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon, who was in Tokyo this week for the imperial enthronement ceremony, but the leaders failed to make progress in easing highly strained bilateral ties.

The session was among dozens of courtesy meetings Abe held with world leaders who had come to Japan for the ceremony.

Despite the lack of clear progress, Lee handed Abe a personal letter from South Korean President Moon Jae-in during the 20-minute meeting, which was originally scheduled to last just 10 minutes. A briefing from Japanese officials suggested the two countries are still locked in a diplomatic standstill over the wartime labor compensation issue involving Japan's 1910-1945 colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula.