Abe urges N Korea to ‘put words into practice’

Tokyo: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said North Korea needed to take “concrete” actions towards denuclearisation on the Korean Peninsula, during talks with South Korean intelligence chief Suh Hoon on Tuesday.
“It’s very important for North Korea to put its words into practice by taking concrete actions towards denuclearisation,” Abe said.
“I’m here to convey President Moon Jae-In’s message that the cooperation between Japan and South Korea is necessary to turn the flow of peace driven by the Pyeongchang Olympics to a good one,” Suh told Abe during their talks at the Prime Minister’s Office.
Suh arrived in Tokyo on Monday to brief Japanese leaders including Abe about the South Korean envoy’s meetings with North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un in Pyongyang and US President Donald Trump in Washington last week.
After the meeting, Suh told reporters Abe “expressed his respect to President Moon’s leadership to improve relations between South and North Korea and maintain peace towards denuclearisation on the Korean Peninsula.”
Moon and Kim have agreed to hold a summit meeting in late April.
Abe is scheduled to fly to Washington in April to hold talks with Trump on North Korea ahead of a planned meeting between Kim and the US president.
Pyongyang this month promised to suspend its nuclear and ballistic missile testing, following talks with a South Korean delegation. The White House has also said that a meeting between US President Donald Trump and Kim will not take place unless North Korea matched its words with actions.
Japan is ready to provide more than 300 million yen ($2.8 million) to help the International Atomic Energy Agency inspect nuclear facilities in North Korea if the reclusive state agrees to inspections, Kyodo News agency reported on Sunday, citing unnamed Japanese government officials.
Tokyo and Washington believe such IAEA inspections are the first step towards the denuclearisation, according to the report. — dpa