Japan defense minister says North Korea's intentions unclear, careful analysis needed

FILE PHOTO - Japan's Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera (L) attends the Defense Ministers meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) at Clark Field in Pampanga province, north of Manila, Philippines October 24, 2017. REUTERS/Dondi Tawatao

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera said on Wednesday that North Korea’s intentions were unclear and careful analysis was needed, when asked by reporters about plans for a summit by North and South Korea.

Onodera said there was no change to Japan’s stance that maximum pressure on North Korea was needed in cooperation with the United States and South Korea.

He said that for meaningful dialogue to happen, North Korea must take concrete steps towards denuclearization.

Reporting by Nobuhiro Kubo; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore