U.S., Japan agree to enhance North Korea sanctions: White House

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TAORMINA, Italy-Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe says the G-7 agreed to step up pressure on North Korea, including sanctions.

"It's a world problem and it will be solved at some point. We overwhelmingly support the United States' stance that all options (related to Pyongyang) are on the table", he said.

"It will be solved, you can bet on that", he said before going into closed-door talks with Abe, without giving further details.

When it comes to North Korea, President Trump has consistently sounded a core message: Beijing is the regime's top economic enabler, and the Chinese have not done enough to ratchet up economic pressure over Pyongyang's nuclear program.

Several countries have been pushing for stronger sanctions against North Korea in response to the repeated missile tests that have been carried out in Pyongyang in this past year.

During the meeting between the two presidents, Trump also said he would prevent North Korea from developing the capability to hit USA soil with an intercontinental ballistic missile.

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However, as North Korea continues launching missiles and taking other provocative actions despite warnings from the nations concerned, there are signs that Japan and the United States - the two nations that are taking the lead on this issue among the G-7 - are feeling a sense of stagnation.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson recently told a United Nations gathering that the U.S. would not hesitate to sanction other countries that support the North's illegal activities.

Abe meant to use the summit to underscore the danger posed by the unpredictable regime in North Korea following its recent series of missile tests.

The world leaders agreed with Abe's remarks, and shared a view that the North Korean threat should be regarded as the highest priority among the problems the world is facing. North Korea's threats not only affect the region but also the world. "We will be discussing terrorism, but I think we will really in particular be focused on the North Korea problem", Trump said.

The Associated Press reported Monday North Korea is ready to begin the mass production of its new missile, which could reach Japan and major military bases.

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