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South Korea's Kang says to discuss wartime issues with Japan, but 'not much time left'

South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha leaves the Foreign Ministry to attend G20 foreign ministers meeing held in the central Japanese city of Nagoya, in Seoul, South Korea, November 22, 2019. Yonhap via REUTERS

NAGOYA, Japan (Reuters) - South Korea and Japan will put discussions about their contentious wartime past back on the table, Seoul’s foreign minister said on Saturday, warning that a recent thaw in relations had bought them a little, but not much, time.

Kang Kyung-wha made the comments to a small group of reporters on the sidelines of a Group of 20 (G20) ministers’ meeting in the Japanese city of Nagoya. Kang spoke after meeting with her Japanese counterpart, Toshimitsu Motegi.

“We bought time for intense discussions, but there’s not much time left for us,” Kang told reporters.

On Friday South Korea reversed at the last minute a decision to let an intelligence-sharing pact with Japan expire. Kang hailed that as a breakthrough in relations.

Reporting by Ju-min Park; Writing by David Dolan; Editing by Neil Fullick