April 24, 2017 / 2:49 AM / 4 months ago

Japan's Abe agrees to keep close contact with U.S. on North Korea

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe speaks during an upper house panel session at the Parliament in Tokyo, Japan, in this photo taken by Kyodo April 13, 2017. Kyodo/via REUTERS

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Monday he and U.S. President Donald Trump had agreed to maintain close contact over North Korea, while demanding Pyongyang show restraint as tensions in the region rise.

Abe told reporters after a telephone call with Trump that he appreciated the U.S. leader's stance of showing that all options are on the table when it comes to dealing with North Korea.

Tensions have risen sharply over North Korea's advancing nuclear and missile programmes. The United States has ordered the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier strike group to sail to waters off the Korean peninsula, prompting Pyongyang to say it was ready to sink the carrier.

Two Japanese destroyers have joined the U.S. carrier group in a show of solidarity.

Reporting by Takashi Umekawa; Editing by Paul Tait

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