S. Korea’s Yoon Reorders ‘South Korea-China-Japan’ Wording

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol, center, greets Indonesian Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Airlangga Hartarto at Merdeka Palace in Jakarta on Friday.

South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol has drawn media attention by rewording “South Korea-China-Japan” to “South Korea-Japan-China.”

When asked about the change a Seoul official said, “We’ve been cooperating more closely with the United States and Japan rather than China based on solidarity in values and freedom.”

South Korea’s YTN television network said the move was a diplomatic maneuver aimed at seeking Chinese cooperation.

Speaking at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Plus Three summit (ASEAN+3) on Wednesday, Yoon emphasized the need for enhanced cooperation among South Korea, Japan and China in the development of ASEAN+3, repeatedly using the term “South Korea-Japan-China.”

In an interview with an Indonesian newspaper published Tuesday, Yoon also mentioned Japan ahead of China.

At a meeting of the same conference last year, Yoon had used the term “South Korea-China-Japan,” according to Yonhap News.