Abe fears US-NKorea talks will omit Japan security concerns

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The goal of the meeting, which will be held at Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, is reportedly to discuss strategy before a planned meeting between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in May. An inter-Korean summit is scheduled for April 27th and the first US-North Korea summit is expected by the end of May.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Friday he would explain Japan's stance on the North Korean abduction of Japanese citizens in a meeting with Donald Trump, ahead of the United States president's planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong -un. "The Japan-North Korea summit will be held in Pyongyang in early June following the U.S".

Kono, referring to the reports Kim might be in Beijing, quipped: "So we never know if someone would come to Tokyo".

Abe said he wants to remind Trump of his concerns during an expected trip to the US next month.

Kono, sometimes floated as a potential candidate to succeed Abe as premier, declined to say whether he might challenge Abe in a September ruling Liberal Democratic Party leadership vote.

Trump will use such talks to demand more USA access to Japan's auto and highly-protected agricultural markets, he added.

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The Asahi quoted another unidentified source as saying North Korea's "dialogue partner on security issues is America" but that the country "can only hope for large-scale financial assistance from Japan".

Tokyo has made efforts to reach out to Pyongyang ever since it got wind that Trump accepted Kim's invitation to meet, said Lisa Collins, fellow with the Korea Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies: "They don't want to be left out of any sort of deal that would be made, and they're very anxious to get their foot in the door".

Those steps include resolving the abductee issue, as well as Pyongyang's missile and nuclear weapons development.

North Korea admitted in 2002 it had kidnapped 13 Japanese in the 1970s and 1980s to train as spies, and five of them returned to Japan.

But more recently, Trump has taken a tougher stance toward Japan in terms of trade.