Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said he and South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol agreed during phone talks Wednesday to further promote bilateral and trilateral cooperation together with the United States, following his recent visit to Washington.

Kishida also said he affirmed with Yoon on the close communication between the two countries, including at the leader level, in the first such call after the South Korean leader's ruling party suffered a crushing setback in a general election on April 10.

"We agreed to continue to deepen ties between Japan and South Korea, as well as among Japan, South Korea and the United States," Kishida told reporters in Tokyo after the talks.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida speaks to reporters at the premier's office in Tokyo on April 17, 2024, following telephone talks with South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol. (Kyodo)

According to the South Korean presidential office, the Japanese side proposed the call so it could brief Seoul on the outcome of Kishida's state visit to the United States last week, the first by a Japanese leader in nine years.

Kishida and U.S. President Joe Biden held talks in Washington on April 10 and reaffirmed their trilateral cooperation involving South Korea in areas including security issues amid North Korea's nuclear and missile threats.

Topics discussed with Biden included the situation surrounding North Korea, Kishida told Yoon, according to the Japanese Foreign Ministry's press release. Yoon appreciated that Kishida shared information on his trip to the United States, the ministry said.

Kishida may have hoped to showcase the cooperative bilateral ties as the South Korean election outcome casts a shadow over the Yoon administration, which has worked to drastically improve ties with Japan after they became strained over wartime compensation and other issues under Yoon's predecessor Moon Jae In.

The phone talks also took place as Japan, South Korea and the United States are growing vigilant over another possible launch of a spy satellite by Pyongyang, with a U.S. think tank estimating that it could take place by the end of April at the latest.

North Korea has said it plans to launch three more spy satellites this year following its first successful launch in November.

Related coverage:

Kishida's leadership put to test as by-election campaigning begins

Japan vows to promote strategic, mutually beneficial ties with China

Japan PM Kishida Cabinet's support rate rises to 23.8%: Kyodo poll