President Trump, Japanese leader to talk about North Korea

President Trump, Japanese PM Abe (WPEC file photo)

President Trump arrived in Palm Beach County Monday afternoon for a meeting this week with Japan’s prime minister.

It’s not just a social visit or a golf outing; they have some serious business to talk over.

The two leaders are friends, but they both have concerns about North Korea---a country they both consider a dangerous enemy.

“I think he’ll probably reassure Prime Minister Abe that the United States will always defend Japan’s national security,” said Palm Beach State College Associate Professor Terry Randolph.

When Trump and Abe sit down to talk Tuesday, Associate Professor Terry Randolph will be watching closely.

Randolph, chair of the school’s political science department, says Japan is worried about the nuclear missile threat it faces from North Korea.

“The Prime Minister of Japan is very concerned that President Trump might be negotiating terms that would be unfavorable to Japan,” he said.

President Trump and the leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-un, are expected to meet in a few weeks for nuclear arms talks.

Randolph says Japan worries that if North Korea agrees to destroy its long range nuclear missiles that could reach the U.S., North Korea might still have other nuclear weapons that could easily reach Japan.

“Really what Abe is hoping to gain from this meeting is more concrete commitments from the United States,” he said.

The concern, Randolph says, is that Trump may strike a deal with North Korea that is good for Trump politically, but still leaves Japan exposed to a possible nuclear attack. Randolph feels Japan wants Trump to insist that North Korea should eliminate all of its nuclear missiles, not just the long range ones.

Besides nuclear weapons, Randolph says trade issues may also come up during the talks at Mar-A-Lago, since Japan is our fourth largest trading partner.

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