US, Japan to discuss regional threats on Aug 17 amid tensions over North Korea

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Pentagon chief Jim Mattis, Japanese Foreign minister Taro Kono and Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera will head to the US capital for a "Security Consultative Committee" meeting.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Pentagon chief Jim Mattis, Japanese Foreign minister Taro Kono and Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera will head to the US capital for a "Security Consultative Committee" meeting.PHOTOS: EPA, REUTERS, BLOOMBERG

WASHINGTON (AFP) - US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Pentagon chief Jim Mattis will meet their Japanese counterparts to discuss regional threats, officials said, amid soaring tensions over North Korea's missile programme.

The Aug 17 meeting in Washington comes as alarm grows over North Korea's rapidly developing missile capabilities, and weeks after Pyongyang tested an intercontinental ballistic missile that splashed into the seas off Japan's Hokkaido island.

Japanese Foreign minister Taro Kono and Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera will head to the US capital for a "Security Consultative Committee" meeting, the State Department said on Monday (Aug 7).

"The meeting will focus on how the United States and Japan can coordinate their response to the evolving regional security environment, and strengthen their bilateral security and defence cooperation," the statement read.

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The two parties will also discuss the US armed forces presence in Japan.