Tokyo: Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Wednesday asked China for explanations on the visit of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to Beijing to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping. “We want to receive a complete explanation from China,” Abe said during a speech in the Japanese Parliament, Efe news reported.
The Prime Minister also said Japan is compiling and analysing information with great interest on this secret visit. China and North Korea on Wednesday announced Kim Jong-un was in Beijing between Sunday and Wednesday and met Xi Jinping, thus confirming speculation raised by the arrival of an armoured North Korean train to Beijing and a major deployment of security personnel in the city.
Kim’s visit, the first overseas one since he came to power in 2011, served to underline to Xi his commitment towards denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and to invite Xi to visit North Korea, reported official media from both countries. Both leaders also discussed the upcoming summits with South Korea and the US.
Abe appreciated North Korea’s willingness to engage in dialogue and emphasized his government’s stance on the country which requires Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear and missile programs in a complete and irreversible manner.
Abe, a staunch advocate of the maximum pressure policy on Pyongyang, in line with Washington, has been skeptical of the regime’s willingness to communicate since the start of the inter-Korean thaw on the occasion of the PyeongChang Olympic Games held in South Korea.
However, he is currently looking to take advantage of the regime’s willingness to participate in multilateral dialogue and include national interests on the agenda, which has led him to organise a visit to US President Donald Trump and to propose a bilateral summit with Kim Jong-un himself.