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New South Korean Ambassador to Japan Yun Duk-min arrived at his posting Saturday with a mission to improve bilateral ties that have soured over wartime labor and other issues stemming from Japan’s colonial rule of Korea.

“South Korea and Japan are the most important partners that share strategic benefits,” Yun told reporters at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport. “I will do my best to build a future-oriented relationship between South Korea and Japan, based on our shared values.”

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