TOKYO, April 29 (Reuters) - Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is expected to visit South Korea in the coming weeks and meet President Yoon Suk-yeol, officials said, reciprocating a Tokyo visit by the South Korean leader last month.

A Japanese government official and another official from a Group of Seven (G-7) government said the meeting is expected before Mr Kishida hosts a G-7 summit from May 19.

Japan’s Kyodo news agency said on Saturday that the two will meet around May 7 or 8, citing multiple unnamed Japanese and South Korean diplomatic sources.

Their aim will be to confirm the two neighbours’ strengthening of cooperation over North Korea ahead of the G-7 summit in Hiroshima, Kyodo said.

Asked about reports of the bilateral meeting, Mr Kishida said in remarks broadcast by public network NHK that nothing concrete has been decided. An answering machine at Japan’s Foreign Ministry on Saturday said no one is available over the weekend.

Ties between Japan and South Korea, long strained by issues including wartime compensation and trade, have been improving in recent months in the face of North Korea’s frequent missile launches and China’s more muscular role on the global stage.

The two sides agreed to revive shuttle diplomacy when Mr Yoon met Mr Kishida in Tokyo in March, the first Japan visit by a South Korean president in 12 years.

The last visit by a Japanese prime minister to South Korea was made by Mr Shinzo Abe in 2018, according to NHK.

United States President Joe Biden this week praised Mr Yoon’s efforts towards improving relations with Japan during the South Korean President’s visit to Washington.

Mr Biden, Mr Yoon and Mr Kishida are to meet on the sidelines of the Hiroshima summit, according to Japanese media reports.

North Korea’s Ms Kim Yo Jong, the powerful sister of leader Kim Jong Un, said a US-South Korea agreement this week about the need to shore up South Korean security will worsen the situation, according to state media KCNA.

North Korea is convinced it must further perfect a “nuclear war deterrent” as a result, Ms Kim was quoted as saying.