Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono is considering visiting Singapore in early June before the Southeast Asian country is expected to host a U.S.-North Korea summit, Japanese government sources said Monday.
Preparations are being made for Kono to meet Singaporean Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan to seek cooperation in sharing information about the summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, planned on June 12, the sources said.
If the first-ever summit between the United States and North Korea takes place as planned in the city-state, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will likely meet with Trump and Kim separately as leader of the host nation of the historic event, according to diplomatic sources.
Kono, who places importance on bilateral relations with Singapore, will also likely ask for support in resolving the issue of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea decades ago, the government sources said.
The Japanese foreign minister plans to go to Singapore on June 9, a day after visiting Malaysia, the sources said.
Over the weekend, Trump and Kim respectively expressed their readiness to meet on June 12 as originally planned, after days of conflicting signals from both sides. The U.S. president had abruptly canceled the summit with Kim.