Trump meets Abe at White House before G7, Kim summit

Washington: Donald Trump on Thursday welcomed Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for talks on North Korea five days before the US president‘s summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, and to discuss trade on the eve of the G7 meeting.

The pair shook hands before walking into the White House.

Trump and Abe were due to address the media at about 2pm (1800 GMT) in a joint press conference.

Abe requested Thursday‘s meeting with Trump to coordinate strategy for the next week‘s talks and to elevate his country‘s concerns about the summit.

Abe is pushing Trump to raise the issue of Japanese abductees held in North Korea, and he is seeking to ensure that Trump‘s efforts to negotiate an agreement with Kim don‘t harm Japan‘s interests.

US allies in the region have expressed concern that Trump‘s push to denuclearise the Korean peninsula could ignore the North‘s sophisticated ballistic missile and chemical weapons programmes.