Washington/Beijing/Tokyo, April 21 (IANS): The US, China and Japan have welcomed North Korea's decision to suspended nuclear tests and inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) tests.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has announced the immediate suspension of nuclear and missile tests, media reports said.
"From April 21, North Korea will stop nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles," Efe quoted Kim as saying.
US President Donald Trump termed North Korea's decision as "big progress". "North Korea has agreed to suspend all nuclear tests and close up a major test site. This is very good news for North Korea and the world -- big progress! Look forward to our summit," Trump wrote on Twitter.
China welcomed North Korea's decision. Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lu Kang made the remarks on Saturday in a statement, Xinhua news agency reported.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also hailed North Korea's decision as positive and urged the country to take steps toward complete disarmament.
Abe stressed that it was important to monitor the situation to see if it would lead to "a complete, verifiable and irreversible abandonment of nuclear arms, weapons of mass destruction and missiles", Efe news reported citing state broadcaster NHK.
The Prime Minister said Japan and the US had discussed possible coordinated actions in different scenarios that could arise with North Korea during his two-day summit with US President Donald Trump held earlier this week in Florida.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said the situation was changing favourably and highlighted changes in the international climate to declare that weapon tests were no longer necessary.