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US consults Japan, South Korea on North Korea review

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This picture taken on December 29, 2020 and released from North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on December 30, 2020 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attending the 22nd meeting of the Political Bureau of the 7th Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK) at the office building of the Party Central Committee in Pyongyang. (Photo by STR / KCNA VIA KNS / AFP) / – South Korea OUT / REPUBLIC OF KOREA OUT /

The United States consulted jointly Thursday with South Korea and Japan, allies often at odds with each other, as President Joe Biden reviews how to move forward on North Korea.

Senior US diplomat Sung Kim and his counterparts promised “close cooperation” in a videoconference and “expressed their continued commitment to denuclearization and the maintenance of peace and stability on the Korean peninsula,” the State Department said.

The Biden administration says it is reviewing how to move forward with North Korea after former president Donald Trump held three splashy meetings with leader Kim Jong Un but failed to reach a lasting deal.

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The Trump administration argued that it ended a diplomatic logjam and effectively stopped North Korea’s nuclear and missile tests, although critics say that Pyongyang nonetheless advanced on the programs.

Biden is expected to take a more low-key approach and his administration has pledged also to raise concerns over cybersecurity, with the Justice Department on Wednesday charging three North Korean intelligence officials over massive hacks.

Trump had strong relationships with both the Japanese and South Korean leaders, but relations between the two neighbours hit new lows during his presidency in disputes linked to the legacy of Japanese colonial rule.

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