TOKYO, February 21. /TASS/. Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida views his recent telephone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin as part of diplomatic efforts aimed at easing tensions over Ukraine, as Kishida himself said, addressing Japan’s parliament on Monday.
"All countries in the world are currently engaged in diplomatic efforts to ease tensions. In this situation, our country should also make diplomatic efforts to bring tensions down. With this awareness in mind, I held telephone talks with Russian President Putin. From this perspective, the talks made sense," Kishida pointed out in response to a remark by Japan Innovation Party member Hitoshi Aoyagi who had expressed doubt that the phone call would produce any result.
The Japanese prime minister emphasized that he had called on the Russian leader "to abandon plans to change the situation by force and search for a generally acceptable solution through diplomatic negotiations." "The situation around Ukraine is a problem not only for Europe but also for the entire international community, including Asia," Kishida noted, adding that the situation was "unpredictable."
The phone call between the Japanese prime minister and the Russian president took place on February 17.
The West and Kiev have recently been echoing allegations about Russia’s potential invasion of Ukraine. Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov castigated these claims as "empty and unfounded", serving as a ploy to escalate tensions, pointing out that Russia did not pose any threat whatsoever to anyone. However, Peskov did not rule out the possibility of provocations aimed at justifying such claims and warned that attempts to use military force to resolve the crisis in southeastern Ukraine would have serious consequences.