The Latest: Japan mum on prospects for summit with N. Korea

PAJU, South Korea — The Latest on North Korean diplomacy (all times local):

5 p.m.

Japan’s government spokesman says his country has been in touch with North Korea, but refuses to say whether a possible meeting between their leaders is being discussed.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga, responding to a question Thursday about reports of such talks, said Japan has all along communicated with North Korea via multiple channels. Suga declined to say if a meeting between Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is being discussed.

The Asahi newspaper reported Thursday that Kim’s administration has mentioned a possible summit with Abe in June following one with U.S. President Donald Trump.

Suga welcomed plans for an April 27 meeting between the leaders of the two Koreas as a sign of progress resulting from international pressure on North Korea.


4:05 p.m.

A senior South Korean official says the summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in will be shaped by discussions on denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula.

Seoul’s Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon said officials from both Koreas exchanged opinions on the agendas of the summit but Cho didn’t provide a clear answer on whether Thursday’s discussions included the nuclear issue.

Cho says both sides will continue working-level discussions while focusing on the issues surrounding the “denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,

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