US, Japan agree to maximize diplomatic pressure on N. Korea

U.S. and Japanese diplomats have agreed to maximize pressure on North Korea to resolve tensions over its nuclear program, while citing the need to be prepared for the worst if diplomacy failed.

U.S. Undersecretary of State John Sullivan, after meeting his Japanese counterpart, Shinsuke Sugiyama, said Tuesday the focus at the State Department is on diplomacy to solve the problem. "We must, however, with our allies in Japan and South Korea and elsewhere, be prepared for the worst" should diplomacy fail.

Sugiyama reiterated Japan's support for President Donald Trump's policy of keeping all options, but stressed the need for a diplomatic solution via cooperation with China and Russia.

The two diplomats will join their South Korean counterpart in Seoul for further talks Wednesday on North Korea.