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IHO's new numerical system may help resolve naming dispute over East Sea Updated: 2020-09-22 10:06:01 KST

A long-running dispute over the naming of the East Sea between South Korea and Japan is expected to be concluded after a decision from a world organization.
According to the International Hydrographic Organization on Monday, the IHO chief will give a briefing on whether or not global sea areas will be referred to by numbers, instead of specific names.
Seoul uses the East Sea rather than the Sea of Japan to identify the stretch of water between the two countries as a result of Tokyo's colonial history, particularly on the Korean peninsula.
With both nations failing to reach a consensus on the issue up to now, the IHO Secretary General proposed a new data set called "a system of unique numerical identifiers", saying that the system is more appropriate in the digital era.
So far, most member nations including South Korea, the U.S., Canada, and Sweden agree with the proposal.
The Japanese government, however, has not made a decision yet, adding that they are prepared to work cooperatively and constructively.

"Because all members recognize that there's a problem from naming it as Sea of Japan, I think we need to persuade them based on private cartographers and internet portals."

The final decision on the proposal will be made at the upcoming general assembly in November, affecting the more than 20-year dispute,and potentially getting a little closer to a conclusion.
Choi Won-jong, Arirang News.
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