U.S. President Donald Trump says the outcome of a historic, high-stakes summit with North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un next week will depend more on "attitude" and "willingness" than preparedness.
Sitting beside Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe ahead of their meeting Thursday at the White House, Trump said he's prepared for the Singapore summit, which he described as "much more than a photo-op."
"They have to denuke," Trump said of North Korea. "We cannot take sanctions off."
Abe is consulting with Trump about his country's concerns regarding the summit. The two will speak with reporters after their meeting.
Before departing for Washington, Abe said his government wants to see progress on limiting North Korea's nuclear program and ballistic missile work, and he wants Trump to discuss with Kim the issue of Japanese nationals who were kidnapped by North Korea during the 1970s and 1980s.
Other powers in the region have had more of a voice in the upcoming Trump-Kim summit in Singapore. The leaders of China and South Korea have met with Kim twice, in addition to consultations with the Trump administration. Abe has signaled he is open to talks with Kim, but only if doing so would help resolve the abduction issue.
Abe is also likely to discuss Trump's recent decision to apply steel and aluminum tariffs meant to protect American workers. U.S. allies, including Japan, have objected to the measures and sought waivers.
Abe said such trade restrictions are not useful.
The U.S. and Japanese leaders are scheduled to hold about two hours of talks and a joint press conference.
Trump tweeted Thursday that the two will be discussing "North Korea and trade."
Looking forward to seeing my friend Prime Minister @AbeShinzo of Japan at noon. Will be discussing North Korea and Trade.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 7, 2018
Trade is likely to be a key topic when Trump and Abe join leaders for a G-7 summit this week in Canada.