• Kyodo

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Defense Minister Taro Kono and U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper have agreed that military cooperation between Japan and South Korea is vital for regional security, as their bilateral intelligence-sharing pact is set to expire Saturday, according to a Defense Ministry official.

They met in Bangkok on Monday, a day after Kono and his South Korean counterpart Jeong Kyeong Doo got together but failed to bridge the gap over how to maintain the General Security of Military Information Agreement, also known as GSOMIA, which Seoul has been refusing to renew despite the looming deadline.

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