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Vow to Ease Launch Tensions

By Li Xiaokun in Ningbo, Zhejiang
April 9, 2012
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Foreign ministers from China, Japan and the Republic of Korea vowed on Sunday to do their best to cool tensions as Pyongyang prepares a satellite launch.

The move was welcomed by Chinese experts who said that the vow seemed to indicate that Tokyo and Seoul are unwilling to resort to military force in response to the launch.

"We ask Pyongyang to show restraint," Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba told reporters at a joint news conference after a two-hour meeting with his counterparts from Beijing and Seoul.

"The three countries will exert the utmost diplomatic effort. I think this agreement is an important achievement," he said.

The three foreign ministers met in the port city of Ningbo, Zhejiang province, to, among other things, prepare for the meeting of leaders of the three East Asian neighbors in China later this year.

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