- Title: JAPAN: U.S. military on alert in Japan to monitor possible North Korean activity
- Date: 22nd October 2006
- Summary: THREE P3C AIRCRAFT ON THE TARMAC
- Embargoed: 6th November 2006 12:00
- Location: Japan
- Country: Japan
- Topics: International Relations,Defence / Military
- Reuters ID: LVADSG4HXANZQNX8O8L15PCWWRKO
- Story Text: U.S. surveillance aircraft continued to take off and land at an airbase in southern Japan on Sunday (October 22) after a week of diplomacy by Japan, South Korea and the United states to reduce tensions caused by North Korea's nuclear test.
At Kadena Airbase in Japan's southern Okinawa island, air traffic has increased at the U.S. base since Pyongyang announced on Oct. 9 it had successfully tested a nuclear device.
On Friday (October 20), U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice ended an Asian tour to rally support for U.N. sanctions on North Korea with few commitments on how the restrictions would be implemented and uncertain the six-party talks would resume.
North Korea's nuclear test sparked international condemnation and led to last Saturday's U.N. Security Council vote to impose economic and weapons sanctions.
The Japanese news agency Kyodo quoted Foreign Minister Taro Aso as saying he had information, although not confirmed, that North Korean leader Kim Jong-il had said he would not conduct another test.
A report by the South Korean news agency Yonhap also said that North Korea did not plan another test reinforced the optimism of China's envoy over the prospects of bringing Pyongyang back into the six-party talks.
China, a traditional ally of North Korea, is seen as having the greatest potential leverage over its reclusive neighbour, but it also fears instability and a potential wave of refugees should sanctions against the North prompt its collapse.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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