Japan's Coast Guard said Thursday that it had arrested a captain of a South Korean fishing boat after it refused to stop for inspection near rocky islets long claimed by both countries.
US envoy Stephen Bosworth arrives in Tokyo Thursday after visiting Seoul and Beijing. Implicit in his talks is a push for Japan and South Korea to cooperate for mutual defense against North Korea.
North Korea appears poised to display its nuclear weapons capability with an underground test, say experts, in a bid to keep military tensions high and force a return to talks.
North Korea has seized numerous South Korean vessels over the years, but this incident comes during South Korean naval exercises in the Yellow Sea that North Korea has denounced as a 'provocation.'