Yet in October 2018, Korea`s Supreme Court issued a surprising ruling that Japanese private companies must compensate workers on the Korean peninsula who were called upon to work for these companies during the Pacific War. The judgment is based on the principle that the 1910 annexation treaty between Japan and Korea was illegal, null and void, in accordance with the Korean Constitution of 1948. While the Korean government strongly supports the Court`s decision, the Japanese government argues that it is not compatible with the 1965 agreement. TOKYO — When South Korean officials discussed with their Japanese counterparts on July 12 the controversial introduction of export controls for essential industrial materials in Tokyo, President Moon Jae-in was touring the southwestern province of Jeollanam-do. In his speech, the South Korean president invoked the memory of a national war hero who defeated the Japanese navy in the 1590s. Japan argues that all claims for this period, including certain claims, were resolved by the 1965 Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea. The standardization agreement established diplomatic relations between the two enemy countries in exchange for $300 million in grants and $200 million in loans from Japan to Korea. Article II provides that the “problem of property rights, rights, interests … and the rights between [the Republic of Korea and Japan] and their nationals are settled in full and definitively.” In order to maintain democracy and peace in East Asia with Japan, the Korean government must act quickly to resolve the dispute with Japan, in accordance with international law and the 1965 agreement. A pragmatic view and an understanding of history are needed to analyze and re-evaluate the 1965 Korea-Japan Agreement, says Yoo.

In fact, the agreement paves the way for the solution. The 1965 agreement between Korea and Japan, while not perfect, still contains many achievements that can be viewed positively both by history and by the people of today, Yoo believes. The current tensions are the result of the 1965 Basic Treaty, which opened diplomatic relations between the two countries. Although they were both loyal allies of the United States during the Cold War, it took 14 years for the agreement to be reached. Given Japan`s insist that export sanctions have absolutely nothing to do with the Decision of the Supreme Court of Korea, the most direct legal battle in the current litigation will take place within the strict limits of trade within the WTO. Under the Uruguay Round Agreement, any WTO member state can file an appeal and ask the General Council to appoint a dispute resolution body that will then have to be heard by both parties and reach a decision within one year. From a legal point of view, the WTO group`s decision in the context of the current litigation will call for a technical review of Mr Nasan`s claims on Japan`s national security. 1 Disputes between the parties regarding the interpretation and implementation of this agreement are initially resolved through diplomatic channels.