Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump reiterated his support for Japan, which he called a "warrior nation," in an interview ahead of his five-country, 12-day trip to Asia. He added that he understands the US ally's concerns over North Korea's nuclear ambitions.
Trump touts relationship with 'warrior nation' Japan ahead of Asia trip
"I think this is one of the more important trips a President has made," Trump said.
Despite an escalating war of words with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in recent months, the US President on Thursday struck an optimistic tone on a potential solution for the ongoing crisis in an interview with Fox News' Laura Ingraham, saying that it is "a thing that I think we will solve."
"They should be worried," Trump said, citing Japan's close proximity to North Korea. "I tell China, and I tell everyone else that listens, I mean, you're going to have yourself a big problem with Japan pretty soon if you allow this to continue with North Korea."
The United States has maintained a significant military presence near the Korean peninsula ahead of Trump's visit to the region next week. The Pentagon has also flexed its muscles in North Korea's backyard in recent weeks.
Trump also spoke highly of his relationships with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping. Xi has been "pretty terrific" to work with on the North Korea issue, Trump said, citing China's cutting off of banking relationships and supplies to North Korea as a sign of Xi's willingness to work with the United States.