Japan Diplomatic Report Shows Softer Stance on N. Korea


Tokyo, April 23 (Jiji Press)--A Japanese government annual foreign policy report published Tuesday took a softer stance on North Korea, dropping an expression in the previous year's report that showed Tokyo's resolve to maximize pressure on Pyongyang.

In the 2019 Diplomatic Bluebook, submitted by Foreign Minister Taro Kono at a cabinet meeting, the 2018 report's language indicating Japan's determination "to maximize pressure on North Korea" was deleted.

The move is aimed at softening North Korea's attitude toward Japan, in order to resolve the issue of Japanese nationals abducted by the reclusive state decades ago.

Touching on the two rounds of summit meetings between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the 2019 report stressed the importance of the international society supporting the process of the two countries' dialogue toward the goal of achieving a denuclearized Korean Peninsula.

In the 2018 report, the ministry described North Korea's enhanced nuclear and missile capabilities as a "grave and imminent threat," but the latest report stopped short of using the expression.

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