SEOUL, South Korea -- Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone acknowledged Tuesday for the first time since World War II that Japan has a stake in the 'peace and security' of the Korean peninsula, South Korean government sources said.
Nakasone, who arrived in the South Korean capital with a 50-member entourage, met for 40 minutes with President Chun Doo Hwan at the Blue House, the official presidential mansion.
'The two leaders agreed in principle on the need to further develop a tripartite security system with the United States to foster peace on the Korean peninsula as well as North Asia,' the sources said.
The Blue House meeting, held amid tight security prompted by an anonymous telephone death threat against the Japanese leader, was the first of two scheduled sessions before Nakasone leaves Wednesday.
Nakasone travels to the United States next week for a meeting with President Reagan certain to touch on Japan's military posture.
One highly placed government source said Chun and Nakasone agreed on a 13-point joint communique, to be released Wednesday, specifically stating that 'peace and security on the Korean peninsula is essential to peace and security in North Asia, including Japan.'
Japan, which has bickered with South Korea over several issues - including Japanese textbooks which glossed over World War II atrocities - has previously avoided involvement in security matters that also affect communist North Korea.
One sticking point between Seoul and Japan, expected to be discussed Wednesday, is a $4 billion loan South Korea is demanding to help defray its defense costs.
Japan occupied Korea until the end of World War II and normalized diplomatic relations only in 1965. Nakasone was the first Japanese leader to officially visit South Korea since then.
As Nakasone was flying to Seoul, North Korea attacked his mission in an official radio broadcast, saying 'the moves to form the triangular military alliance pose a grave threat to peace and security in Korea.'