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MOSCOW, September 12 (Itar-Tass) — Airspace patrolling by planes of the Russian Air Force in the Pacific area poses no threat to Japan, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated on Monday.
“According to information coming to the Russian Foreign Ministry, the Japanese authorities in recent days have been making active signals of some Tokyo’s “concern” in connection with the airspace patrolling over the Pacific Ocean conducted by two Tupolev Tu-95MS long-range strategic bombers of the Russian Air Force,” the Russian ministry said.
“In this regard, we consider it necessary to note that the said patrolling was carried out over neutral waters in strict compliance with international rules, without violating the borders of other states, for the purposes of fulfilling a set of training tasks,” the RF Foreign Ministry noted. “Such flights are common practice for the armed forces of any state, including, as we understand, Japan.” “And the air navigation warning about the above flights of the Russian Air Force aircraft had been transferred to the Japanese side in advance, according to the established procedure of international law,” the Russian ministry emphasised.
“Thus, it is quite clear that the actions of the two aircraft cannot be qualified as posing a threat to Japan, the more so indicative of Russia’s ‘hostile plans’ to this neighbouring country,” the Russian Foreign Ministry stated. “If such views exist in Tokyo, they are absolutely groundless, cause surprise and suggest that certain forces in Japan are trying to use any excuses, even the most far-fetched, to whip up anti-Russian sentiment, thereby darkening the atmosphere of relations between our countries.”
“Moscow proceeds from the importance of the further advance of Russian-Japanese relations in various fields, as agreed by the two countries’ leaders in a telephone conversation on September 6, 2011,” the Russian Foreign Ministry stressed. “In our view, it includes the maintenance and expansion of contacts also in the military sphere, including on issues of ensuring security in the Asia-Pacific region. We hope that Tokyo shares this approach.”