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The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, spoke this morning by phone with the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, Taro Kono.
They discussed the situation on the Korean Peninsula in light of recent developments. The High Representative/Vice-President confirmed the EU's commitment to its policy of critical engagement with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), which combines pressure through sanctions against the DPRK with outreach to facilitate a negotiated solution to the challenges posed by the DPRK's nuclear and missile programmes. The High Representative highlighted that the European Union's most stringent sanctions regime in place is against the DPRK, while all measures imposed by the UN Security Council are fully and swiftly transposed and implemented. The European Union will also continue its targeted global outreach to stress the importance of strict implementation of the UN-imposed sanctions. The High Representative also debriefed on contacts this week between EU and DPRK officials. High Representative Mogherini and Minister Kono agreed that it is essential to continue efforts towards the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula and agreed to continue close coordination towards this objective.
Speaking about the Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA), both the High Representative and the Foreign Minister reaffirmed their strong commitment to the deal and to its implementation. The High Representative thanked the Foreign Minister for Japan's contribution to the implementation of the deal, including through technical assistance.
The call touched upon EU-Japan bilateral relations, in particular the Strategic Partnership Agreement and the Economic Partnership Agreement, which, once in force, will signal the high importance given to the relationship and enable an even closer partnership and cooperation. High Representative Mogherini and Minister Kono looked forward to the finalisation of the Strategic Partnership Agreement as soon as possible, therefore enabling the signature of the two agreements together later this year.
The High Representative and the Minister looked forward to meeting at the G7 meeting in Toronto later this month and agreed to stay in close contact in the weeks ahead.