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Biden’s victory may worsen US sanctions against Russia, says Japanese analyst

The current Japanese government has vowed commitment to the policies of the previous Shinzo Abe-led Cabinet, which sought a dialogue with Russia, the expert stressed

TOKYO, November 9. /TASS/. Joseph Biden’s victory in the US presidential election will apparently result in Washington’s tighter sanctions against Russia, including those in the field of export of fossil fuels, one of Japan’s leading specialists on the former Soviet Union, Nobuo Shimotomai, has told TASS.

"With the advent of a Catholic president the Democratic Party’s habitually strong pressure on Russia on various issues, including Ukraine, will soar," said Shimotimai, an honorary professor of Tokyo’s Hosei University, author of two dozen books on various aspects of Russian politics and history. "The probability of sanctions will grow. As the trend towards ecologically clean energy sources gains strength in the United States and the European Union countries, there is a great risk the import of fuels will begin to be taxed with the aim of reducing carbon dioxide emissions, which would be equivalent to sanctions against Russia."

Shimotomai believes that an acute standoff between the Democratic and Republican parties in the United States will continue and a new conflict between the new president and the Senate may flare up. "In a situation like this US policies will be domestically-centered, so reformatting relations with Russia in the interests of dealing with world problems will be rather hard."

The current Japanese government, Shimotomai said, has vowed commitment to the policies of the previous Shinzo Abe-led Cabinet, which sought a dialogue with Russia.

"However, the possibility of some major shifts on this track is insignificant, given the coronavirus pandemic situation, the global economic crisis and US-Chinese confrontation," Shimotomai said, adding that Biden’s election might open up new opportunities for Russian-Japanese relations.

On November 3, American citizens headed to the polls to elect 435 representatives to the House, 35 senators out of 100 to the Senate, and the President and Vice President of the United States.

Though the vote count is still underway, major US media outlets project that the Democratic contender has presumptively won the presidential election. Both Fox News and Associated Press have put Biden over the top, beyond the needed 270 vote threshold. Trump is challenging the current outcome, claiming irregularities in the ballot processing in key swing states, and has filed lawsuits to fight his case in court.