After Japan tightened export controls for key chip-making materials in 2019, South Korea, under then-President Moon Jae-in, notified Tokyo that it would not renew the pact.
The South Korean Defense Ministry will withdraw this notice.
Washington welcomed the summit.
The talks “will be a tangible manifestation of efforts by these two strong allies of the United States to further their own bilateral relationship,” US State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters Tuesday.
The United States is hosting Yoon for a state visit in April.
The United States sees the thaw between Japan and South Korea as crucial to navigating an increasingly challenging security environment.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine over a year ago shows no signs of ending.
Beijing has signaled its growing influence on the global stage by negotiating a deal for Iran and Saudi Arabia to restore ties, and there is speculation that China could be prepared to invade Taiwan by 2027.
The United States has the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) as a backup in Europe, but in East Asia, it relies mainly on a trilateral partnership with Japan and South Korea.
“Our countries are stronger, and the world is safer and more prosperous when we stand together,” US President Joe Biden said this month.
Although security cooperation between the three countries focuses on North Korea, American troops in South Korea would play an important role in a crisis involving Taiwan.
General Paul LaCamera, commander of US Forces in South Korea, said last year that American forces make contingency plans for any kind of scenario.
Yoon increasingly sees a crisis in Taiwan as a direct threat to South Korea.
“In the case of military conflict around Taiwan, there would be a greater possibility of North Korean provocation,” he said in an interview with CNN last year.
Expanding cooperation between the Japanese Self-Defense Forces (SDF) and South Korea’s military would be a significant step in dealing with a composite crisis involving China, North Korea, and Russia.
But challenges remain.
Exchanges between the SDF and South Korean forces were disrupted after a South Korean destroyer jammed its targeting radar on an SDF jet in 2018.
The Japanese and South Korean defense ministers have not met since then.
South Korea plans to spend U$43.8 billion) on defense in fiscal 2023, a figure comparable to Japan’s US$50.9 billion.
With the South again referring to North Korea as an “enemy” under Yoon, the diplomatic thaw between Tokyo and Seoul appears to shape the security sphere.
With information from Valor