Japan: Coast Guard assert territorial waters

Japan called on North Korea on Saturday to take actions toward denuclearization by complying with U.N. sanctions over its nuclear and missile development, a two-day summit meeting in northeastern Japan.

 

In the joint declaration released after the gathering in Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and leaders from 14 Pacific island nations expressed “deep concerns” over the North evading international sanctions by transferring cargoes at sea.

 

Photo credit to: https://www.japantimes.co.jp

The leaders “strongly called on North Korea to immediately take concrete actions” in accordance with the U.N. Security Council resolutions and pledged “their commitment to exerting continued pressure on North Korea.”

 

Leaders stress for a peaceful resolution toward complete dismantlement of all weapons of mass destruction including biological and chemical weapons and ballistic missiles as well as related facilities of North Korea.

 

It is the first time for Japan and the Pacific island countries to mention the North Korean issue in their declaration. Japan has hosted a regional summit with the Pacific island nations every three years since 1997.

 

On the flurry of diplomatic development surrounding the Korean Peninsula, Abe and Pacific island leaders welcomed an agreement reached on April 28 between South and North Korea toward the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

 

They also expressed hope that the upcoming summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore on June 12 “would deliver North Korea’s concrete actions for such goals.”

 

The participants at the 8th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting also stressed “the importance of addressing humanitarian concerns, including the immediate resolution of the abductions issue,” referring to Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea in the 1970s and 1980s.

 

In a keynote speech at the outset of the summit, Abe also pledged to support the Pacific island countries in enhancing their maritime security capabilities, given their vulnerable coastal security.

 

Reference: Abe urges Coast Guard to fulfill duties to protect nation’s territorial waters

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