U.S. President Donald Trump has declared North Korea is no longer a threat, but that doesn't make the Japanese fishermen of Sakata feel any easier as they leave port for the peak fishing season.

Instead, they worry they will have to confront North Korean fishing boats competing for their prized catch of squid in the fertile waters of the Yamato Shallows, 400 km (250 miles) off Japan's northwestern coast and an area Tokyo calls its exclusive economic zone.

In a ceremony marking the start of the fishing season this month, captains of the fleet in Sakata, Yamagata Prefecture, prayed for a safe fishing season and plentiful harvest. Children threw colorful ribbons onto ship decks as crewmen waved to their families from departing ships.