Photo: Anadolu Agency via AFP/Koji Sasahara

An unnamed ruling party official has told Reuters that Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is finalizing details for a summit to be held with US President Donald Trump on April 18.

The purpose of the meeting, which will be held at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida, is reportedly to discuss strategy before a planned meeting between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in May.

Abe will also ask Trump to exempt Japan from his steel and aluminum tariffs, according to the source, who has been briefed on the matter and asked not to be identified.

Kim is expected to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in in April.

US, Japan ‘in sync’ on North Korea
Japan’s Foreign Minister Taro Kono emphasized in an interview with Reuters on Tuesday that the US and Japan are “completely in sync” over North Korea and agree that it must abolish its medium- and short-range missiles as well as intercontinental and intermediate range ballistic missiles.

“I think the US and Japan are in sync for this North Korea issue. It is important for the international community as a whole to keep maximum pressure on North Korea until North Korea takes concrete steps toward complete irreversible and verifiable denuclearization,” Kono said.

An earlier report from Japan said that Abe had been blindsided by Trump’s sudden agreement to hold a summit meeting with Kim.