UN chief: Japan, China, South Korea must reconcile over history to ensure peace and stability

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has urged the leaders of Japan, China and South Korea to work harder for reconciliation over their wartime past to ensure peace and stability in the region.

In a speech Monday in Tokyo marking the 70th anniversary of the United Nations, Ban said the countries' lack of reconciliation is "a missing link" for peace and stability in northeast Asia despite the U.N.'s engagement.

Japan's relations with its closest neighbors, China and South Korea, have worsened in the past few years because of disputes over history and territorial issues, with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government seen as increasing efforts to revise the country's stance on World War II atrocities.

Ban was in Tokyo following his participation in an international disaster conference held in northern Japan.