Japan’s new foreign minister, Taro Kono, said on Tuesday international pressure against North Korea must be maintained until Pyongyang clearly demonstrates that it will give up its nuclear program.

“It’s not the time to discuss (the resumption of) six-party talks,” Kono said, referring to international negotiations involving both Koreas, the United States, Russia, China and Japan for the denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula.

“It’s time to exert pressure,” he said in an interview with a group of reporters.

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