Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Obama, Japan's New Prime Minister Unite over N. Korea; They Agree to Seek Tougher Security Sanctions

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Obama, Japan's New Prime Minister Unite over N. Korea; They Agree to Seek Tougher Security Sanctions

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON Signaling solidarity, President Barack Obama and Japans new prime minister said Friday that North Koreas recent nuclear provocations would not be tolerated and pledged to seek strong action against the isolated nation.

After their meeting in the Oval Office, Obama said he and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe were united in their determination to takes strong actions in response to North Koreas nuclear test launch earlier this month.

Abe, speaking through a translator, said the two leaders had agreed to deal resolutely with North Korea.

We just cannot tolerate the actions of North Korea, such as launching missiles and conducting nuclear tests, said Abe, adding that the two leaders also agreed to push for tougher U.N. Security Council sanctions against North Korea.

Other regional tensions in Asia served as the backdrop for Fridays meetings, most notably Japans dispute with China over the Japanese-administered Senkaku islands.

The dispute flared after Tokyo nationalized some of the islands in September. China also claims the tiny islands, which it calls Diaoyu. It has stepped up patrols into what Japan considers its territorial waters, heightening concern that a conflict could be sparked. The tension highlights the rivalry between China, the worlds second-largest economy, and Japan, which is the third.

Tokyo accused China last month of locking weapons-guiding radar on a Japanese destroyer and a helicopter, in what it viewed as a dangerous escalation. Beijing accused Tokyo of fabricating the reports to smear China.

The U.S. has treaty obligations to help Japan in the event of a conflict, obligations Abe said were a stabilizing factor in ensuring peace and stability in the region. He pledged that Japan would continue to deal with its dispute with China in a calm manner.

Abe is the latest in a revolving door of Japanese prime ministers, underscoring the Asian nations prolonged economic malaise. …

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