Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and US President Donald Trump on Monday discussed the latest North Korean missile launch over the phone and agreed that China and Russia must contribute to the diplomatic pressure on Pyongyang.

“I completely agreed with President Trump on the recognition that we must take further action (regarding tougher sanctions against North Korea),” Abe told the media. 

Abe said that “North Korea has trampled” over peaceful efforts to resolve regional tension and “unilaterally escalated (the situation)”, adding that China and Russia and the rest of the international community “must take seriously this undeniable fact and increase their pressure” on Pyongyang. 

Japan’s Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Koichi Hagiuda said Abe and Trump agreed it was necessary for Beijing, Pyongyang’s closest ally, to assert its influence to ensure that North Korea abandons its nuclear and missile programme.

Trump wrote on Twitter on Saturday that he was “very disappointed in China”, claiming it has done “nothing” to help solve the North Korea crisis.

Following North Korea’s missile launch on Friday, the second intercontinental missile developed by the regime, Washington and its allies have stressed the need to step up sanctions.

The Hwasong-14 missile flew nearly 1,000 km and reached a maximum altitude of more than 3,700 km, suggesting that it could reach much of US territory.