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Kono, Tillerson reaffirm pressure on N. Korea

The Associated Press

Foreign Minister Taro Kono, left, meets U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, right, before a high level Security Council meeting on North Korea at U.N. headquarters on Friday.

Jiji Press NEW YORK (Jiji Press) — Foreign Minister Taro Kono and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at a meeting in New York on Friday reconfirmed the policy of maximizing pressure on North Korea to make the reclusive state change its policy.

The U.S. foreign chief recently indicated a readiness to hold dialogue with North Korea even if it does not show an intention to scrap its nuclear program.

At their meeting in Tokyo last month, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump agreed to increase pressure on North Korea, which continues nuclear and ballistic missile development. At a joint press conference after the bilateral summit, Abe said the two leaders strongly confirmed that Japan and the United States are 100 percent together in response to North Korea.

Tillerson’s recent remarks apparently contradicted the hard-line stance against Pyongyang, sparking concerns in Japan.

Kono asked Tillerson to investigate the cause of an incident on Wednesday in which a window frame of a U.S. military helicopter fell onto the playground of an elementary school in Ginowan, Okinawa Prefecture.

The Japanese minister also called on the U.S. side to ensure that such an incident will never happen again. The school is located adjacent to the U.S. Marine Corps’ Futenma Air Station. Okinawa hosts the bulk of U.S. military bases in Japan.Speech

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