Young diplomats of Korea, Japan, China gather

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Young diplomats of Korea, Japan, China gather

More than a dozen junior diplomats from Korea, China and Japan gathered in Seoul for the first trilateral diplomats’ exchange program, which kicked off yesterday.

Five diplomats from each country, all below the rank of director, are participating in the Oct.18-22 event, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Seoul said.

The idea for the exchange grew out of a trilateral summit held on Jeju Island in May 2010 as part of efforts to deepen cooperation among the three countries.

The summit also produced the Trilateral Cooperation Secretariat, an intergovernmental body tasked with developing or implementing plans related to trilateral cooperation that had its opening ceremony in Seoul late last month.

The five-day exchange program started with a visit to the trilateral secretariat office in Gwanghwamun, central Seoul, the ministry said.

Some of the junior diplomats participating in the exchange program had also participated in launching the secretariat as working-level officers, the ministry said.

Today, the junior diplomats will participate in a separate international conference hosted by the trilateral secretariat. The conference aims to present a picture of how the three countries can come together through cooperation, the ministry said.

The event also includes a discussion on trilateral issues with students from Seoul National University Graduate School of International Studies, and cultural events including a visit to Jeju Island.

“This exchange program has been arranged to help young diplomats, who will lead trilateral cooperation in the future, better understand the significance of cooperation in Northeast Asia and will also give them time to talk with each other,” a Seoul official said, adding that the three countries will alternate in hosting the event each year.

By Moon Gwang-lip []
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