Noda talks Iran with Israel’s Barak

Kyodo

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda met Wednesday with Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Barak, with Iran’s nuclear ambitions high on the agenda.

As the two countries mark the 60th anniversary this year of the establishment of diplomatic relations, Noda said at the outset of the meeting that Japan is eager to step up efforts to “bolster bilateral relations.”

The meeting took place amid growing concern that Israel could carry out a military strike against Iran over its suspected nuclear weapons program.

Japan currently imports around 10 percent of its oil consumption from Iran. Noda has said Japan will aim to reduce the imports while dealing with the Iranian nuclear issue diplomatically and peacefully.