In 2018, the South Korean Supreme Court ordered a Japanese steel company to compensate the Korean victims of Japan's wartime forced labor.
"The former laborers' right to reparation was not terminated by the 1965 treaty that normalized ties."
But with the Japanese firm refusing to follow the court's decision, a district court in South Korea decided to seize Nippon Steel's assets.
Nippon Steel submitted an immediate complaint and the Japanese government threatened retaliatory measures.
"If South Korea cashes in Nippon Steel's assets, we will respond resolutely."
The original supreme court decision had led Japan to apply export restrictions on Seoul.
Now, with the Japanese government considering a strong response to South Korea's plan to sell the seized Nippon Steel assets, tensions could rise once more.
Strong measures by Tokyo could lead Seoul to reconsider terminating GSOMIA, its info-sharing pact with Japan.
"GSOMIA can be terminated at any time by the South Korean government, regardless of the date, and the concept of extending the agreement every year does not apply at present."
With the two neighboring countries so far apart over historical issues, there's a need for a breakthrough so that it doesn't further damage their current economic and security situation.
Kim Jae-hee, Arirang News.