Consultation Pledge: US, Japan, South Korea

  Aug 23, 2023

US, Japan, and South Korea "Duty to Consult" Pledge

Q1. What is the new "duty to consult" pledge involving the United States, Japan, and South Korea?

The United States, Japan, and South Korea have agreed to a new security pledge that commits the three countries to consult with each other in the event of a security crisis or threat in the Pacific region.

Q2. What does the "duty to consult" pledge entail?

Under the pledge, the three countries agree to consult, share information, and coordinate their responses in the face of a security threat or crisis. The commitment is meant to acknowledge their shared security environments and the understanding that a threat to one nation is a threat to all.

Q3. How does the pledge impact each country's right to self-defense?

The commitment does not affect each country's right to defend itself under international law. It also does not alter the existing bilateral treaty commitments between the United States and Japan, as well as the United States and South Korea.

Q4. What is the historical context of this pledge?

The pledge was announced as part of a summit between U.S. President Joe Biden, South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol, and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland.

Q5. Why is this summit significant?

The summit aims to strengthen security and economic ties among the three countries. It is a crucial opportunity for the U.S.'s two closest Asian allies to enhance cooperation amidst security challenges posed by North Korea's nuclear threats and China's actions in the Pacific region.

Q6. How does China view this development?

China criticized the summit, expressing concerns about the formation of exclusive groups and cliques that could lead to increased tensions. The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson emphasized the importance of promoting unity in the Asia-Pacific region.

Q7. How does the U.S. respond to China's criticism?

U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan clarified that the partnership is not intended to be an "NATO for the Pacific." Instead, it aims to create a free, open, secure, and prosperous Indo-Pacific vision.

Q8. What other outcomes are expected from the summit?

The summit is likely to result in plans to invest in technology for a crisis hotline and sharing early-warning data on missile launches by North Korea. It may also include expanding military cooperation on ballistic defenses, establishing annual summits, and committing to a multi-year planning process for joint military exercises.

Q9. What is the significance of Camp David in this context?

Camp David, where the summit is held, has historical significance as a venue for diplomatic negotiations. Notably, former President Jimmy Carter hosted talks between Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin that led to a peace treaty.

Q10. What is the primary goal of the summit for the United States and its allies?

The summit serves as an opportunity for the United States, Japan, and South Korea to deepen their cooperation, strengthen ties, and address security challenges collectively. It reflects a commitment to ensuring regional stability and security in the face of complex geopolitical dynamics.


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