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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 25 June 2018

Trump says US will work with Japan for a balanced trade deal

Speaking after a summit with Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo, the US president also said the two countries were working to counter the 'dangerous aggressions' of the North Korean regime

US president Donald Trump on Monday said Washington stood with ally Japan against the North Korean "menace" and that Washington would work with Tokyo to sort out problems on trade between the world's biggest and third-largest economies.

Speaking after a summit with Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo, Mr Trump repeated his mantra that the "era of strategic patience" was over, and said the two countries were working to counter the "dangerous aggressions" of the North Korean regime.

The US president was on the second day of a 12-day Asian trip that is focusing on both trade and North Korea's nuclear missile programmes.

Mr Abe told the same news conference that Japan backed Mr Trump's stance that "all options" are on the table when it comes to North Korea, saying the two countries were "100 per cent" together on the issue.

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Earlier, Mr Trump vowed to push for a free and balanced trade partnership with Japan after decades of "massive trade deficits" but said relations with close ally Tokyo were "better than we have ever had".

The Japanese prime minister, at the start of a working lunch with Mr Trump, offered his "heartfelt condolences" for the victims of a gunman who massacred at least 26 worshippers at a church in Texas.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said Mr Trump, who had earlier expressed grief for the victims, had no plans at that time to change the schedule for his trip, which will also take him to Seoul, Beijing and Danang in Vietnam.