The U.S. State Department reiterated the importance of "robust and effective" trilateral cooperation among the U.S., South Korea and Japan.
Department spokesperson Ned Price issued the position on Tuesday during a press briefing when asked about a renewed rift between Seoul and Tokyo in relation to President Moon Jae-in's decision not to go to Japan for the Olympics.
Price refused to directly comment on Moon's scrapped visit and summit with the Japanese leader, but stressed the importance of "robust and effective" trilateral cooperation.
The spokesperson said it is critical for shared security and common interests in defending freedom and democracy, upholding human rights, championing women's empowerment, combating climate change, promoting regional and global peace and security, and bolstering the rule of law in the Indo-Pacific region and across the globe.
When asked to comment on wartime sexual slavery, Price said that Washington has long encouraged South Korea and Japan to work together on history-related issues in a way that promotes healing and reconciliation.
He added that even while addressing sensitive historical questions, cooperation on common regional and international priorities must proceed.