North Korea says it is rethinking whether it will adhere to its moratorium on nuclear and missile tests and other measures aimed at improving links with the United States. The statement puts blame on regular Korean military drills that are emerging. (16 July)

South Korea said, Thursday, that it will end an information sharing agreement with Japan, prompting immediate concern from US military officials and arising after repeated North Korean missile tests.

Pentagon spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Dave Eastburn said information sharing is vital for a unified defense strategy in the region. The three countries – the United States, South Korea and Japan – are stronger and safer when they work together, he said.

"We encourage Japan and Korea together to resolve their differences," he said in a statement.

The South Korean presidential office announced the decision to rectify the information sharing agreement for a recent decision by Japan to downgrade South Korea's trading status.

Pictured at the South Korean Presidents Blue House, South Korean President Moon Jae-in, reports from officials under the Military Information Security Agreement, or GSOMIA, at the President's Blue House in Seoul, South Korea, on Thursday. , August. 22, 2019. South Korea will stop exchanging classified information for North Korea with Japan among bitter trade disputes, said Thursday's official, likely surprising announcement of US efforts to strengthen security cooperation with two of its most important alliances of Asia region. (Photo: AP) t

“Under this case, the government decided that the maintenance of the agreement, signed for the purpose of sensitive military information on exchange security, decided on our national interests,” Kim Kim-geun, deputy director of national security of South Korea's office, said in a national television statement.

This is the latest in a series of tit-for-tat movements that have a rooted relationship between the two countries, which have a tragic history of going to Japanese colonial rule on South Korea. Japan annexed to Korea in 1910 and ruled that brutally for 35 years, trying to eliminate Korean culture and make Korean women prostitution to Japanese soldiers.

Recently, the history of this history was reopened with recent court ruling in South Korea that South Koreans could seek compensation from Japenese companies for forced labor. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other senior administrative officers of Trump Japan and South Korea insisted on stopping the increasing sales actions – without effect.

The information discussion took effect in 2016 and made it easier for the two allies to share classified data on North Korea's nuclear threat, as well as monitoring increasing military capabilities in China. South Korea's decision to withdraw from the agreement follows North Korea's testing of weapons in recent weeks.

South Korea said it would formally inform Japan before Saturday, the deadline to extend the agreement for another year.

As the dispute came from Japan-South Korea, North Korea said on Thursday that it would not make talks about its nuclear arsenals as long as “military threats” from the US and South Korea continue. The statement said, from the North Korean foreign affairs ministry, that the military drills constituted U.-South-Korea contests, which had completed new Stealth fighter Seets.

Contribution: Tom Vanden Brook and Associated Press

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