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Will Abe address its wartime atrocities at joint meeting of U.S. Congress? Updated: 2015-03-27 22:35:54 KST

When Prime Minister Shinzo Abe speaks in front of both the Senate and the House of Representatives of the U.S. Congress on April 29th the world will be tuning in to see how he deals with calls to apologize for his country's wartime atrocities.
The consensus seems to be that his speech may focus on issues of national interest for Tokyo and Washington.

"Abe's likely to devote much of his speech to the massive Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact and Japan's right to collective self-defense rather than its wartime atrocities."

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner said Thursday Abe's address will be an opportunity to hear ways to expand economic and security cooperation from a close ally.
And U.S. officials are hoping to see a breakthrough in trade talks, namely the TPP, with President Obama's pivot to Asia.
But Abe's U.S. trip comes at a time when its stance on historical and territorial issues is at odds with its neighboring countries, namely China and South Korea.

"Some experts say that how Korea and China interpret and react to Abe's speech will be critical for historical, territorial and security issues."

If Abe doesn't address these issues as Seoul and Beijing want Tokyo to experts are highly doubtful that a summit would materialize.

"In the last ministerial meeting between China, Korea and Japan, China and South Korea has conditioned the likelihood of a possible summit among the three countries based on Mr. Abe's speech."

The last trilateral summit was held in 2012 and has been stalled since, mainly due to territorial disputes between China and Japan.
President Park Geun-hye and Abe have never held a one-on-one summit.
Connie Kim, Arirang News.
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