Japan's Shinzo Abe says efforts to clinch US-North Korea summit must continue

Abe is seen on a screen during a session of the St Petersburg International Economic Forum. PHOTO: REUTERS

ST PETERSBURG, Russia (REUTERS) - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Friday (May 25) he regretted the cancellation of a summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, and said the world should keep working to ensure such a meeting can happen.

Trump dangled the possibility on Friday that a June 12 summit with Kim could still take place, just a day after he cancelled the meeting citing Pyongyang's "open hostility".

Speaking at an economic forum in the Russian city of St Petersburg, Abe said a summit could be a key factor in peace talks on the Korean peninsula after years of tension over Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme, but he also cautioned: "Dialogue for the sake of dialogue is senseless."

Abe said countries should also try to ensure that Pyongyang continued taking action on its nuclear weapons programme.

The Japanese premier said North Korea should be obliged to meet certain conditions, such as denuclearisation, the return of abducted people and fulfilling UN resolutions, before being allowed to discuss long-term partnership with other countries.

Abe said North Korea should make the right choice so that its people can live in prosperity and that it was very important that Pyongyang fulfilled all United Nations resolutions on the full denuclearisation of the country.

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