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Yoon, Kishida Discuss Row over Naver's Line App during Summit

Written: 2024-05-26 19:29:42Updated: 2024-05-26 19:40:40

Yoon, Kishida Discuss Row over Naver's Line App during Summit

Photo : YONHAP News

President Yoon Suk Yeol and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida held summit talks on Sunday to discuss bilateral relations, including the row over Japan's popular Line messaging app. 

In the summit held at the presidential office in Seoul, Yoon said that he recognizes the Line app controversy as a separate issue from the diplomatic relations between the two nations. 

The row was triggered by Tokyo's administrative guidance urging Line Yahoo, the operator of the Line app, to review its financial relationship with South Korea's Naver, a major shareholder of the Tokyo-based company. 

The guidance prompted concerns in South Korea, as it has been seen as a demand for Naver to sell its stake in Line Yahoo in Tokyo's efforts to reduce South Korea's influence in its market. 

According to a senior official at the top office, Yoon said in the summit that he does not understand the guidance as a demand for Naver to sell its stake, while also noting the need to manage the issue properly to ensure it will not become an unnecessary issue between the two nations. 

In response, Kishida reportedly said that the administrative guidance was a demand for reviewing security governance in relation to a massive leak of Line users' personal information. 

The Japanese prime minister added that Tokyo and Seoul have communicated and cooperated well on this issue from the early stages and plan to continue close communication down the road.

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