Trump backs Japan’s efforts to communicate with Iran

Trump's "state call" opened with handshakes and greetings from Naruhito, and his wife, Empress Masako.

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US President Donald Trump with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during a dinner at a hibachi
US President Donald Trump with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during a dinner at a hibachi

Donald Trump visited Japan where, on Monday, he backed the Japanese prime minister’s interest in using Japan’s good relations with Iran to help establish a possible dialogue between the U.S. and its current enemy in the Middle East.

Trump did say he wishes an open dialogue between the US and Iran, and has sought to downplay fears of military conflict. The Iranians, on the other hand, have said they have no interest in communicating with the White House.

“I know that the prime minister and Japan have a very good relationship with Iran so we’ll see what happens,” Trump said during his meeting with Shinzo Abe in Tokyo.

“The prime minister’s already spoken to me about that and I do believe that Iran would like to talk. And if they’d like to talk, we’d like to talk also. We’ll see what happens … nobody wants to see terrible things happen, especially me.”

Trump has implemented a wave of new sanctions on Iran, which are surely crippling its economy. Late last week, he also announced the deployment of 1,500 U.S. troops to the region amid escalating tensions. The U.S. have earlier deployed an aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers to the Persian Gulf in response to information of Iranian threats to U.S. interests in the region.

Japan's Abe says Trump supports his intention to meet North Korean leader
Japan’s Abe says Trump supports his intention to meet North Korean leader

Abe and Trump held talks right after the U.S. president became the very first world leader to meet Japan’s new emperor, Naruhito, who ascended to the throne on May 1.

As he sat with Abe, Trump acknowledged the significance of meeting the new emperor. Earlier this month, Naruhito took the throne after his father stepped down, the first abdication in Japan’s royal family in about almost centuries.

“It’s a very important thing, not only in Japan, but all over the world they’re talking about it.” – Trump commented about the meeting.

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