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FM Chung discusses bilateral ties, regional issues with new Vietnamese counterpart

Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong (Yonhap)
Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong (Yonhap)

Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong spoke by phone with his Vietnamese counterpart on Wednesday and discussed bilateral relations and regional issues, including Japan‘s planned release of radioactive Fukushima water.

In the phone talks with Bui Thanh Son, Chung asked for Vietnam’s close cooperation in strengthening the economic and other ties between South Korea and the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the five Mekong countries -- Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand, the foreign ministry said.

Son took office early this month.

Deepening the relations with ASEAN and Mekong region nations is a key regional initiative being pushed for by the Moon Jae-in government.

In the talks, Chung also expressed concerns over Japan‘s planned discharge of contaminated water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant, the ministry said. Son, in turn, stressed transparency, responsibility and safety with regard to the marine environment, the ministry added.

On the occasion of the Year of South Korea-Mekong Exchanges this year, the two sides agreed to push for various virtual or in-person events in an effort to promote the partnerships, according to the ministry. (Yonhap)