US President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe discussed the issue of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program as they met on the sidelines of a Group of 20 summit in Argentina Friday, the White House said.
Japan has sought to increase its voice in the diplomatic efforts to rid the North of its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, which pose a direct threat to the archipelago nation.
And Abe has built a close relationship with Trump while tensions with South Korea have boiled over due to disputes over Japan’s 1910-45 occupation of the Korean Peninsula.
|US President Donald Trump (Yonhap)|
“The two leaders reviewed recent developments in North Korea and discussed how best to work with the international community, including their close ally the Republic of Korea, to maintain pressure until North Korea implements its commitment to denuclearize,” the White House said in a readout.
Japan is a strong supporter of the US-led campaign to keep economic sanctions on North Korea until it dismantles its nuclear program in a complete and verifiable manner.
|Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (left) and the Japan’s first lady Akie Abe (Yonhap)|
Going into the meeting, Trump touted the bilateral relationship as “quite extraordinary.”
“We’re two countries that are doing very well in many different ways,” he said. “Our military working together, having to do with North Korea and other factors, really has been very strong.”
The White House said the two also discussed cooperation on “advancing a free and open Indo-Pacific,” energy and infrastructure, and pending negotiations for a bilateral free trade agreement. (Yonhap)