Negotiators and representatives from five of the six countries involved in the stalled talks on ending North Korea's nuclear arms program held an informal meeting in Tokyo on Thursday in the absence of Pyongyang, a Japanese diplomatic source said, in a move aimed at stepping up pressure against the North.

Representing Japan, the United States, South Korea, Russia and China, they discussed applying stronger sanctions against Pyongyang to push it to take more concrete steps to denuclearize, the source said. North Korea is also part of the six-party framework.

But the five nations failed to agree on tightened sanctions due to opposition by China and Russia, the source said.