Faced with mounting political pressure at home, the South Korean government Friday abruptly postponed the signing of its first military cooperation pact with Japan since World War II.
The deal had been hailed as a significant step by the two governments. Both countries have been struggling to overcome the lingering historical bitterness between their peoples and to cooperate more closely on security matters in the region.
Now the fate of the agreement has become uncertain as South Korea’s political look ahead to a presidential election this year.
U.S. aircraft to deploy
Also Friday, the United States said it will go ahead with the deployment of 12 MV-22 Osprey aircraft to American bases in Japan in the face of protests sparked by recent crashes.
The Ospreys, which can fly like an airplane or like a helicopter, will be sent to the Marine air base in Iwakuni next month, the Pentagon said. Japan asked the U.S. for information about a June crash of the aircraft in Florida that injured five.
Tensions from the U.S. military presence in Okinawa have risen over an agreement to relocate a base from one part of the island to another