South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol, U.S. President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will adopt a document committing each side to consult with one another in the event of a common security or other threat, officials said.
The document titled "Commitment to Consult" will be adopted at a trilateral summit involving the three leaders at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland on Friday, according to the officials.
It will be the first such commitment that has been made by the three countries, the officials said, underscoring their growing closeness and cooperation in the face of North Korea's nuclear threat and China's increasing assertiveness.
"The leaders of South Korea, the U.S. and Japan (will adopt) a separate document containing a political commitment to strengthen consultations among the three countries," Principal Deputy National Security Adviser Kim Tae-hyo told reporters Thursday.
"This will allow each country to communicate closely about common threats and challenges in the region and come up with timely and effective response measures," he said.
The document will not specify the type of threat or challenge that will trigger the commitment to consult, a presidential official said. Also, in the event one country decides not to share information because it deems a particular threat to not be a threat to itself, it will have no obligation to do so.
"It will be a document saying that when there is a trade dispute, or a North Korean missile threat, or a serious provocation at sea, or any threat in and outside the region, be it military, economic or cyber, if it is thought to be directly connected to our interests, we can share information, coordinate messaging and come up with joint response plans," the official said.
The less-than-half-page document will be part of a joint press statement to be issued by the three leaders after their summit. The reason it will be lifted and made into a separate document is because such a commitment is unprecedented among the three countries, according to the official.
"South Korea, the U.S. and Japan have dealt with such issues passively until now and are agreeing to consult closely and actively going forward to resolve what's necessary," the official said.
The Commitment to Consult will not violate or interfere with the existing alliance treaties between South Korea and the U.S., or between the U.S. and Japan, and will not carry any new obligations under international law, the official added.
The three leaders plan to adopt two other documents as well -- the "Camp David Principles" and the "Spirit of Camp David" -- with the first one containing sustainable guidelines for trilateral cooperation, and the second outlining their vision for trilateral cooperation and its implementation plan.
Source: Yonhap News Agency