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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shakes hands with Harry Harris (L), the 24th Commander of United States Pacific Command (USPACOM), as Harris makes a courtesy visit to Abe at the prime minister's official residence in Tokyo, Japan, 16 November 2017. REUTERS/Kimimasa Mayama/Pool

(reuters_tickers)

TOKYO (Reuters) - Admiral Harry Harris, head of the U.S. military's Pacific Command, told Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera on Thursday that diplomacy backed by military power was necessary to deal with North Korea's missile and nuclear development.

"Clearly, while diplomacy must be the main effort with North Korea, it has to be diplomacy backed by credible military power," Harris said at the beginning of his meeting with Onodera.

North Korea has fired two missiles over Japan and conducted its sixth and the largest nuclear test in recent months, stoking regional tensions.

(Reporting by Kiyoshi Takenaka; Editing by Chang-Ran Kim)

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Reuters