The three countries’ foreign ministers began holding trilateral talks in 2008, but the meetings were suspended in 2012 when the tensions worsened over the East China Sea islands territorial dispute.
South Korea, Japan and China have strong economic ties, but relations between the countries are tense due to unresolved historical disputes, including the Japan’s occupation of Chinese territories and colonization of Korean peninsula during the World War II.
China and South Korea want Japan to admit all of its wartime wrongs, including crimes concerning so-called “comfort women” — girls who were forced into sexual slavery by Imperial Japanese Army during the World War II. Many of the women were from the occupied countries, such as Korea, China and the Philippines.
Beijing and Seoul alienated from Tokyo further in December 2013, when Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited a Tokyo shrine honoring Japan’s war dead, including war criminals.
At the Saturday talks, the countries’ foreign ministers aim to restore regular trilateral summit and calm regional tensions.