Trump opens state visit, needles Japan over trade issues

The president, who is on a state visit to Japan, is being treated to a welcome ceremony full of pomp and pageantry.

He said they would discuss "various challenges of the worldwide community" and that includes North Korea.

The two leaders have put on a show of friendship but have policy disagreements over trade and North Korea.

Trump has set measured expectations for what will be accomplished, tweeting that serious trade negotiations with Japan "will wait until after their July elections", referring to upcoming parliamentary elections.

He claimed in a tweet that "numerous" Japanese officials had told him that Democrats would rather see the US fail than see Trump or his Republican Party succeed.

After his visit with Japan's new emperor, Mr. Trump will meet with Abe at Tokyo's official state guest house.

Abe, who has been cozying up to Trump on a number of issues, is concerned because the missiles pose a threat to security in Japan.

Match over, Trump walked onto the stage in dark slippers - shoes are banned from the ring - to present the cup.

"In terms of violating U.N. Security Council resolutions, there is no doubt about that", Bolton said, adding that Trump and Abe would "talk about making sure the integrity of the Security Council resolutions are maintained".

The tests are no small thing for Mr. Trump's Japanese hosts.

The epicenter was southern Chiba, southeast of the capital, the prefecture where Trump is due to play golf on Sunday.

Japanese and USA officials have downplayed the prospect of a major breakthrough at the summit - the second of three planned over a three-month period.

Trump ignored a shouted question from a USA reporter about whether he believed North Korea had violated U.N. Security Council resolutions.

Abe next introduced Trump to Japan's ancient sport of sumo wrestling, which Trump had previously said he finds "fascinating".

Trump landed from his overnight flight shortly after a magnitude 5.1 natural disaster struck just south of Tokyo and rattled the city.

US President Donald Trump has dismissed concerns about recent North Korean missile tests, appearing to contradict his own national security adviser.

"There's been no rocket testing, there's been no nuclear testing". But US officials said substance would take a back seat to the lashings of ceremonial Japanese culture meant to impress and flatter the US leader.

"I think we'll make a deal", he said at the press conference alongside Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

"When I talk about a security threat, I talk about a balance sheet", he said, adding that Japan had bought "tremendous amounts" of US military gear. It was Abe, who is seen by some as using the invitation to meet Naruhito to curry favor with Trump who is threatening to impose potentially devastating tariffs on Japan's auto industry, among other tensions in the relationship.

"With this deal we hope to address the trade imbalance, remove barriers to United States exports and ensure fairness and reciprocity in our relationship".

Trump and Abe will likely discuss the importance of coordinating North Korea strategy, "essentially the balance between pressuring the Kim Jong-un regime and exploring opportunities for diplomacy", Nicholas Szechenyi, another Japan expert from the center, added during Wednesday's teleconference.

US President Donald Trump has become the first foreign leader to meet Japan's Emperor Naruhito.

Japan has urged the Trump administration to maintain pressure on North Korea, and has said this month's missile tests are a violation of United Nations resolutions.

Trump kept up pressure on Japan to cut its trade surplus with America, saying ahead of the summit that he expected some announcements, probably in August, with the trade gap straightened out rapidly. Washington and Tokyo are negotiating a bilateral trade deal.

Speaking in Tokyo last week, Mr Abe mirrored Mr Bolton's comments, calling North Korea's recent missile launches "a breach of UN Security Council resolutions and extremely regrettable".

  • Leroy Wright