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Abe Meets North Korea’s No. 2 Official in Pyeongchang (News)

Pyeongchang, South Korea, Feb. 9 (Jiji Press)—Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō briefly met with North Korea's second-highest-ranking official on Friday, during their visit to Pyeongchang, South Korea, to attend the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics, according to South Korea's presidential office. Abe shook hands and exchanged words with Kim Yong Nam, president of the Presidium of the Su…
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Abe Urges Moon to Implement Comfort Women Pact (News)

Pyeongchang, South Korea, Feb. 9 (Jiji Press)—Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō at a meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Friday urged Seoul to steadily implement its December 2015 bilateral accord with Tokyo on the issue of so-called comfort women. They reaffirmed cooperation among the two Asian countries and the United States in dealing with North Korea's nuclear and missile de…
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Abe, Pence Agree to Keep Maximum Pressure on North Korea (News)

Tokyo, Feb. 7 (Jiji Press)—Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō and US Vice President Mike Pence, at a meeting in Tokyo on Wednesday, reconfirmed their countries' stances of continuing to apply maximum pressure on North Korea to make the reclusive state abandon its nuclear and missile development programs. The Abe-Pence meeting took place ahead of their separate talks with South Korean President …
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A North Korean Spy Ship in Yokohama: The Japan Coast Guard MuseumJulian Ryall

The Japan Coast Guard museum displays the day-to-day operations of the JCG, although the incident it was opened to showcase—the sinking of a North Korean espionage boat—resembles a spy thriller more than real life.
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Japan Local Governments Troubled by Apparent North Korean Wooden Boats (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 20 (Jiji Press)—With a record number of wooden boats apparently from North Korea having drifted to Japan this year, local governments in northeastern Japan are busy dealing with the bodies of their crews and disposing of the vessels. The number of such vessels that have been found drifting in the Sea of Japan, which separates Japan and the Korean Peninsula, or washed up on the Japan…
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Japan Decides to Boost Missile Defense with Aegis Ashore (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 19 (Jiji Press)—The Japanese government decided at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday to introduce the Aegis Ashore ground-based missile defense system in a bid to better prepare for ballistic missiles from North Korea. The government plans to acquire two Aegis Ashore batteries for deployment at Self-Defense Forces facilities in Akita Prefecture, northeastern Japan, and Yamaguchi Prefectu…
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Record Number of Drifting Wooden Boats Found in Japan in 2017 (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 13 (Jiji Press)—A total of 83 wooden boats apparently from North Korea have been found drifting in the Sea of Japan or to the Japanese coast so far this year, the highest figure since comparable data become available in 2013, the Japan Coast Guard said Wednesday. The number of such boats, as of Wednesday noon, topped the previous annual record of 80, marked in 2013, probably because…
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Trump’s Asia Tour and Japanese DiplomacyKohara Masahiro

The author, a former diplomat, assesses the outcome of President Trump’s recent Asian tour and considers the implications for Japan’s foreign policy, noting the importance of stronger ties between Tokyo and Beijing against the backdrop over uncertainty about the prospects for the North Korean nuclear and missile development programs and the shape of the regional order.
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Jenkins, Husband of Ex-Abductee to North Korea Soga, Dies at 77 (News)

Niigata, Dec. 12 (Jiji Press)—Charles Jenkins, the husband of Soga Hitomi, who was abducted by North Korea in 1978 and returned to Japan in 2002, died of fatal arrhythmia on Monday. He was 77. Jenkins, a former US soldier from North Carolina, deserted the US forces in South Korea and crossed the Korean demilitarized zone in 1965. He taught English in North Korea. Jenkins married Soga, now 58…
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North Korea Fires ICBM into Sea of Japan (News)

Seoul, Nov. 29 (Jiji Press)—North Korea fired an intercontinental ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan in the small hours of Wednesday, Japanese and US defense officials said. Pyongyang's fresh provocation is expected to further heighten tensions on the Korean Peninsula and prompt the international community to strengthen pressure to make the reclusive nation abandon its nuclear and missile …
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