South Korea and Australia voiced deep concerns over rising tensions caused by North Korea's endless provocations, and stressed the importance of resolving the regime's nuclear issues through diplomatic means.
South Korea's Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha and Defense Minister Song Young-moo met with their Australian counterparts, Julie Bishop and Marise Payne at Seoul's foreign ministry, for so-called 'two-plus-two' talks, which have been held every other year since 2013.
Top of the agenda was North Korea's provocations, including the regime's sixth nuclear test and its series of ballistic missile launches.
"Our two countries discussed ways to enhance cooperation against North Korea's nuclear and missile threats and other defense and security-related issues."
Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said the two sides condemned the recent nuclear test by the North, calling it a violation of UN Security Council resolutions.
The two sides agreed that diplomatic efforts are needed to peacefully achieve the regime's complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization.
Australian foreign minister Bishop urged Pyongyang to come back to the negotiating table.
"And we have a very significant discussion on the ways that we can work together through deep cooperation and collaboration with a view to deterring any future illegal test by North Korea and to compel North Korea back to the negotiating table with an aim of denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula,"
South Korea also holds two-plus-two talks, on the ministerial level, with the United States.
Kim Hyun-bin, Arirang News.