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International relations

Japan and South Korea struggle to look ahead, 20 years on

Despite declaration of 'future-oriented' relations, history dominates talks

Then-Japanese Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi, right, and then-South Korean President Kim Dae-jung sign a joint declaration in Tokyo in 1998.
Then-Japanese Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi, right, and then-South Korean President Kim Dae-jung sign a joint declaration in Tokyo in 1998.

TOKYO -- Two decades after issuing a joint declaration pushing for the creation of a "future-oriented" relationship, Japan and South Korea are still struggling to put their history behind them as long-running disputes over wartime "comfort women" and other topics flare up again.

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