Japan-North Korea Foreign Ministers' Meeting
July 1, 2004
Minister for Foreign Affairs Yoriko Kawaguchi held a meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs Paek Nam Sun of North Korea during her visit to Jakarta to attend the meetings of the ASEAN+3 (Japan, China and the Republic of Korea) and the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF). The following is a summary of the meeting.
- Japan and North Korea confirmed that reflecting the results of the Japan-North Korea Summit that took place in Pyongyang on May 22 and based on the Pyongyang Declaration, they would make efforts to improve and normalize the relations between Japan and North Korea by settling outstanding issues one by one as swiftly as they can.
- The North Korean side officially expressed its agreement for a reunion among Ms. Hitomi Soga, Mr. Charles Jenkins and their two daughters to be held in Indonesia. The Japanese side stated that it hoped a reunion could be realized by July 23 at the latest, which is the birthday of the second daughter, Brinda Jenkins. In response, the North Korean side stated that the sooner for this to be realized the better.
- Regarding the question of new investigations concerning those abductees whose whereabouts have not yet been confirmed, the Japanese side emphasized that given the fact that Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi had been informed by Chairman Kim Jong-Il of the DPRK National Defense Commission that new investigations would be undertaken from a clean slate, it was indeed important that the results of the investigations be obtained as soon as possible. In response to this, the North Korean side stated that new investigations had already been implemented by the agencies concerned and that a response would be made to Japan as soon as the results were available.
- Regarding humanitarian assistance, the Japanese side stated that preparations were currently under way in contact with relevant international organizations.
- With regard to the follow-up to the Japan-North Korea Summit, it was decided that working level consultations would be held in the future as necessary between Japan and North Korea.
- On North Korea's nuclear issue, the Japanese side stated that although some progress was made at the third round of the Six-Party Talks, further efforts are needed with a view to strengthening the gained momentum, resolving the differences that exist in the positions of the Parties, making further progress with the Six-Party Talks, and thereby achieving a peaceful solution to the nuclear issue. In response to this, the North Korean side indicated a similar recognition and stated that it would seriously study the proposal put forward by the United States of America and that although freezing of the nuclear development program would lead to its dismantlement, the response by the United States was important in realizing the ultimate goal of denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
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