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Trump says ‘all ready’ for Kim summit, as he hosts Japan PM

Update: June, 08/2018 - 09:20
US President Donald Trump and Japan’s PM Shinzo Abe (left) hold a joint press conference in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC. — AFP Photo
Viet Nam News

WASHINGTON — Five days before meeting North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, US President Donald Trump said Thursday the unprecedented summit was “all ready to go,” as he welcomed Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the White House.

Trump and Abe held a joint press conference at the White House, before heading to Canada for what promises to be a tense Group of Seven summit clouded by the US leader’s aggressive trade policies.

But before tackling the thorny trade issue, Trump expressed unbridled optimism — and confidence — about his June 12 tete-a-tete with Kim in Singapore.

“The summit is all ready to go,” Trump said, with Abe at his side. “It’s going to be much more than a photo op.”

“I’m very well-prepared. It’s about attitude, it’s about willingness to get things done,” he told reporters.

Since the first inkling that a Trump-Kim summit could be on the cards, Japan has repeatedly insisted that Washington be mindful not to let its guard down with the nuclear-armed regime in Pyongyang.

And by coming to Washington to see Trump for the second time in less than two months, Abe wants to be sure to get his point across to the US president, amid the intense diplomatic flurry over the future of the Korean peninsula.

Abe  said at the joint press conference with Trump he is willing to talk directly with North Korea in a bid to resolve the festering issue of abductions of Japanese citizens and foster better ties with Pyongyang.

“I wish to directly face North Korea and talk with them so that the abduction problem can be resolved quickly,” he said.

The US leader promised to raise the highly sensitive issue of the Japanese nationals kidnapped by Pyongyang in the 1970s and 1980s with Kim Jong Un at next week’s high-stakes summit in Singapore.

Abe added there was no change in Japan’s policy to pursue “real peace in Northeast Asia” and that if North Korea “is willing to take steps” in the right direction, it will have a “bright future.” — AFP

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