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Japan, North Korea talks end on positive note: Official

Published on Mar 31, 2014 7:34 PM
 
Junichi Ihara (fourth from left), Japanese Foreign Ministry director general, talks to North Korea's ambassador for talks to normalise relations with Japan, Song Il-Ho (fourth from right), at the North Korean embassy in Beijing on March 30, 2014. Government-level talks between Japan and North Korea ended on Monday in Beijing on a positive note, with Pyongyang apparently prepared to discuss the Japanese citizens kidnapped by its spies decades ago. -- PHOTO: AFP

BEIJING (AFP) - Government-level talks between Japan and North Korea ended on Monday in Beijing on a positive note, with Pyongyang apparently prepared to discuss the Japanese citizens kidnapped by its spies decades ago.

At their first formal meeting in 16 months, diplomats from the two countries spoke on a range of issues over two days, including North Korea's nuclear weapons programme, officials said.

"We had serious and frank discussions on wide-ranging pending issues of mutual interest," Mr Junichi Ihara, head of the Japanese foreign ministry's Asian and Oceanian affairs bureau, told reporters.

"We agreed to continue government-to-government consultations with the next round to be arranged through our embassies in Beijing," he said.

 
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