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HOME  > Past issues  > 2008 January 16 - 22  > Ogata, Kasai exchange views with South Korean vice foreign minister on return of Korean cultural asset
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2008 January 16 - 22 [JCP]

Ogata, Kasai exchange views with South Korean vice foreign minister on return of Korean cultural asset

January 17, 2008
On January 16, Japanese Communist Party Vice Chair Ogata Yasuo and House of Representatives member Kasai Akira, who were in Seoul, visited the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and exchanged views with Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Cho Jung-pyo on Japan’s return of Chosen Oushitsu Gigi (Joseon Dynasty Uigwe), a collection of Royal Protocols of the Korean Dynasty.

Also present at the meeting were Joo Ho-young, National Assembly member of the Grand National Party and the spokesman of incoming President Lee Myung-bak, and Jeong Nyeom, priest of the Wol jyoung Temple and co-representative of the Committee for Return of the Royal Protocol.

Vice Minister Cho welcomed the two JCP representatives on the Foreign Minister’s behalf and expressed his appreciation for their effort to get the cultural heritage now kept at Japan’s Imperial Household Agency returned to South Korea.

The vice minister said that at the Japan-South Korea Vice Ministerial Strategic Dialogue on January 8 the two nations agreed to address this issue.

Ogata, a former House of Councilors member who called on the Japanese government to return the documentary heritage to South Korea at a House of Councilors Foreign Affairs Committee meeting in May last year, said, “In principle, cultural assets should be returned to where they originally belonged.”

Kasai said, “I have been working during this issue in the past half year. As this issue has become a diplomatic issue between the two countries, I will make further efforts in the Diet.”

National Assembly member Joo said that he hopes that Japan’s return of Uigwe will strengthen the friendship between South Korea and Japan.

Ogata and Kasai on the same day attended a dinner that Cultural Heritage Administration Director Yoo Hong-jun hosted to welcome them and spoke with Yoo and other officials.
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