Japanese PM Shinzo Abe hints at possibility of Tokyo-Pyongyang talks: South Korea's Blue House

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that successful inter-Korean and US-North Korea talks will lead to dialogue between Tokyo and Pyongyang, according to a Blue House spokesman.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that successful inter-Korean and US-North Korea talks will lead to dialogue between Tokyo and Pyongyang, according to a Blue House spokesman.PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL (THE KOREA HERALD/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday (April 24) hinted that his country could engage North Korea in dialogue should the inter-Korean and US-North Korea summits be successful.

The comments were made in Abe's telephone conversation with President Moon Jae In, the presidential Blue House said.

"Success of the inter-Korean summit will not only lead to the success of the US-North Korea summit that will follow but contribute to the normalisation of relations between Japan and North Korea, and provide the opportunity to fundamentally solve issues between Japan and North Korea," Moon was quoted as saying by Blue House spokesman Kim Eui Kyeom.

According to Kim, Moon then asked Abe whether he considers Japan-North Korea talks to be necessary, to which the Japanese leader hinted at the possibility.

Abe said that successful inter-Korean and US-North Korea talks will lead to dialogue between Tokyo and Pyongyang, according to Kim.

"Successful inter-Korean and US-North Korea summits would mean nuclear and missile issues, and abduction issues being resolved," Kim quoted Abe as saying.

"In that case, resolution of past issues between Japan and North Korea and normalisation of relations could be achieved."

During the 40-minute conversation that began at 4pm, Moon also said that a peace treaty between the two Koreas will require agreement of the US, and that he will cooperate with the US as well as Japan to create circumstances that will allow such a treaty.

Moon also said that he has raised the issue of abducted Japanese citizens with North Korea and that he will relay Abe's position to Kim during his meeting on Friday.