Russia announces suspension of peace talks with JapanIt has been maintained for regional reasons since the end of World War II, following sanctions imposed by Tokyo. As a result of what the Kremlin described as “unfriendly” in the face of the conflict in Ukraine. Japan has in recent weeks joined forces with Western powers in imposing tough sanctions on Moscow for its offensive in Ukraine, which began on February 24. The war could turn Japan’s defense strategy against China’s regional aspirations According to analysts, open a door to those who ask for higher military spending in the country.
Japan’s “anti-Russian” study
“Under the current circumstances, Russia does not want to continue negotiations on a peace agreement with Japan.”The Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement. According to the Kremlin, “it is not possible to talk about signing a basic document on bilateral relations with a government that is openly friendly and detrimental to Russia’s interests.”
Russia has announced that it will block Japan’s participation in the Black Sea Economic Cooperation, which was created in the early 1990s to boost economic cooperation between the Black Sea countries. From the Kremlin they lamented the “anti-Russian course” taken by Japan in recent days And expressed disappointment that the Asian country had abandoned the development of “mutually beneficial cooperation and good neighbors”.
After World War II, the two countries did not sign a peace treaty due to a dispute over four small islands in the Kuril Islands., A group of islands occupied by the Soviet army in the last days of the conflict and has not been returned to Japan since then, calling them the “Northern Territories”. Despite attempts to negotiate after the fall of the Soviet Union, they never succeeded.
In the last days, Japan has raised the number of Russian citizens whose assets have been frozen to 76Among them is the President, Vladimir PutinAs well as 12 Belarusians, including his colleague Alexander Lukashenko. Japan, like other G7 countries and the European Union (EU), has imposed a series of sanctions on Russia since the beginning of the conflict. Exclusion of Russian banks from the Swift system.
Japan is breaking its past
When Russia invaded Crimea’s Ukrainian peninsula in 2014, the Japanese response was sluggish. But this time it has gone so far as to send undead military aid to Ukraine, along with its Western allies. The crisis is already affecting the debate on military spending and efficiency in a country whose constitution restricts the role of its armed forces to defense..
“Japan has already been accused of paying in one way or another by not being directly involved in the crisis,” said Valerie Niquet, an Asian expert at the French Strategic Research Foundation. At the moment, Tokyo “puts more emphasis on showing what they do than on showing what they do.”
In part this speed reflects the unusual nature of the conflict, but there are other factors involved Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has stepped down, seeking reconciliation with Moscow. Abe, who resigned in 2020, hoped the dispute with Russia over the Kuril Islands could be resolved through a better relationship. Regardless of Abe, the Japanese government felt free to act against MoscowAlthough it has not pulled out of joint energy deals with Russia for fear of shortages.
China at the crossroads
China is still concerned with its growing regional ambitions, including its desire to “reunite Taiwan” and its claims to several disputed islands. Earlier, Tokyo feared that aggression against Russia would bring Moscow closer to Beijing, “but now that has completely changed,” he said. James D.J. BrownAssociate Professor of Political Science at Temple University in Tokyo. Now that is the vision “Japan must be tough on Russia, otherwise it sets a precedent and encourages us to think that China can do the same.”Brown noted.
The Ukrainian crisis could further strengthen the position of those calling for military spending. In last year’s campaign, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party set a long-term goal Increase the military budget by more than two percent of GDP compared to the traditional one percent. The offensive debate, such as conducting drone strikes against the enemy, has disputed the limits of the island’s pacifist constitution since 1947.
That is even more controversial The ruling party seeks to discuss nuclear deterrence, Following the recommendations of lawmakers to consider sharing nuclear technologies. Japan currently relies on U.S. nuclear protection, and its long-standing policy prohibits the production, possession, or possession of such weapons. But discussing this issue in the country affected by the bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki reflects the consequences of the Ukrainian crisis.
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