Top Diplomats of China, Japan Agree to Cooperate on N. Korean Issues

Eels are widely consumed across Japan

Eels are widely consumed across Japan

On North Korea, Kono said he and Wang "confirmed that we will work in close coordination, while fully implementing the relevant U.N. Security Council resolutions, to make the complete, irreversible and verifiable abandonment of North Korea's nuclear and missile (programs) a reality".

The Chinese side was led by Foreign Minister Wang Yi, the first visit by a Chinese foreign minister for bilateral talks since 2009.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi yesterday began a visit to Japan described as a major step forward in improving frosty relations, as Tokyo tries to stay involved in a flurry of worldwide diplomacy over North Korea.

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The Trump-Abe discussions, the second of its kind between the two since a year ago, would continue with a larger bilateral meeting where the leaders could expand their discussions to include a range of "priority bilateral issues", said the official.

Wang spent eight years in Japan as a diplomat with three of those years as China's ambassador.

The ministers talked about recent developments in North Korea but Japanese officials refrained from clarifying whether they discussed specifics from the summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Xi in Beijing late last month.

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Kono told Wang that true improvement in bilateral ties can not be achieved without stability in the East China Sea, where China has challenged Japan's sovereignty over uninhabited islets. The dispute over islands in the East China Sea - known as the "Senkakus" in Japanese and the "Diaoyu" by the Chinese - remains a source of tension.

"I hope that we will be able to discuss what and China can work together on in the worldwide arena, not just bilateral issues", Kono told reporters on Friday.

Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi, who will stay in Japan until Tuesday said he hopes that his visit could become an important step for bilateral relations to return to normal and create conditions for future high-level exchanges, reported Chinese state media Global Times.

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Wang spoke to reporters in Tokyo on Sunday after his meeting with Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono.

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