Photo/IllutrationVisiting U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo meets with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang on Oct. 7. (Captured from The Rodong Sinmun website)

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un did not address the issue of Japanese nationals abducted by Pyongyang during his meeting on Oct. 7 with visiting U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Pompeo brought up the issue in accordance with a request made by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Oct. 6 in Tokyo, according to a source knowledgeable about U.S.-North Korea relations.

The U.S. secretary of state also passed on to Kim a message from Abe that he was prepared to meet directly with the North Korean leader to resolve the abduction issue as well as the issues related to North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles.

The source said Kim had no particular comment on Abe’s proposal.

Kim had also displayed a passive stance toward a meeting with Abe during talks held in September with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, a source said.

In addition, North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho told Foreign Minister Taro Kono during a short meeting in New York in late September that Pyongyang was in no hurry for a Kim-Abe meeting.

After talking with Pompeo by phone for about 15 minutes on Oct. 8, Kono told reporters that Pompeo said the abduction issue was brought up during his meeting with Kim. However, Kono refrained from commenting on Kim’s response.

Kono also told reporters that Japan and the United States agreed that it was still too early to declare an end to the Korean War as desired by North Korea.

Foreign Ministry officials announced on Oct. 8 that Kenji Kanasugi, director-general of the Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, met for about an hour in Seoul on Oct. 7 with Stephen Biegun, U.S. special envoy for North Korea who accompanied Pompeo on his visit to Pyongyang. The meeting was to coordinate policy related to North Korea.

(This article was compiled from reports by Yoshihiro Makino in Seoul and Tamiyuki Kihara in Tokyo.)