February 25, 2024

With friends like these? Japan reaches out to Cuba for N. Korea assistance

Shinzo Abe is hoping Pyongyang's old comrades can talk them down from the brink

Japan is looking for an improbable source of support in getting North Korea to cool it on its nukes and missiles – and maybe even come clean on Japanese citizens kidnapped years ago to North Korea. How about Cuba, a nation often proclaimed by North Korea as a close friend and ally bound in common cause against “imperialism”?

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe flies to Havana on Thursday on a mission to persuade Cuban President Raul Castro to relay kind diplomatic words on Japan’s behalf to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.