November 08, 2023

Japan-South Korea Cooperation Amid Israel-Hamas Conflict Proves Benefits of Trilateral With US

The Israel-Hamas war is proving to be the first major test of Japan and South Korea’s ability to deepen collaboration in the spirit of the Camp David Summit, and so far, they are passing the test.

In August, the United States, Japan, and South Korea announced plans to cooperate trilaterally on a broad range of issues affecting regional and global stability and prosperity, including a commitment to consult and coordinate responses to challenges affecting their mutual security interests. In their joint remarks at Camp David, the leaders emphasized that “challenges that threaten regional security must be addressed by us building a stronger commitment to working together.”

Japan and South Korea’s cooperation on the Israel-Hamas conflict is a positive indication of rapprochement between the two capitals, and a powerful sign to each state’s citizens that there is a clear benefit to their national interests in working together.

Beyond the need to seize the momentum from Camp David, Japan and South Korea have good reason to work together in response to the Israel-Hamas conflict. Both strongly depend on Arab oil imports. Japan, which imports roughly 94 percent of its energy, has historically acquired more than 80 percent of its oil from the Middle East. Likewise, South Korea imports 98 percent of its energy needs, with 60 percent originating from the region.

Read the full article from The Diplomat.

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