Russia sees threat of US strike missile deployment in Japan, Lavrov said

RUSSIA, (BM) – Moscow does not suspect Tokyo of having malicious intentions against Russia, but cannot but take into account the deployment of US strike weapons at its borders, learned, according Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov statement.

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We are talking about the Aegis ashore installations that were tested by the United States to launch missiles previously prohibited by the INF Treaty.

“The missile launchers purchased from the USA are located in Japan, the very launchers that the United States has already tested not only to launch anti-missiles, but also to launch attack cruise missiles. That is, it is already a weapon that was prohibited by the Treaty on intermediate and shorter-range missiles, while it operated, until the Americans broke it. This is already an opportunity for strike weapons near our borders. Of course, we must take this into account,” he said, RIA Novosti reports.

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At the same time, the minister emphasized that Moscow has no suspicions that the Japanese leadership, the Japanese political elite have some evil intentions regarding Russia, but Moscow is concerned about the possibility of deploying Aegis ashore launchers in Japan.

“Of course, we don’t want the threat of the Russian Federation to come from the territory of our good neighbor, as we consider Japan. Yes, indeed, we have concerns, they are formulated, they are discussed both in the framework of the dialogue between the deputy foreign ministers and in the framework of the dialogue at the level of secretaries of the Security Councils,” Lavrov said.

He also noted that the last meeting on strategic stability between US and Russian diplomats in Vienna did not allow the parties to achieve impressive results, but the dialogue continues.

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“We will firmly strive to ensure that our world does not remain without agreements that at least somehow hold back, control weapons, especially nuclear, non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction,” the head of the Russian diplomatic mission assured.

Meanwhile, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said that Japan had not convinced Russia that the new Aegis Ashore missile defense systems were planned to be installed only for the country’s defense.

Recall that in 2017, Japan decided to deploy on its territory two American ground-based missile defense systems Aegis Ashore, which should be deployed in Akita prefectures in the north-west of the country and in Yamaguchi in the south-west until 2023.

Moscow reacted negatively to this decision, but the Japanese authorities claim that there is no threat to Russia. In December 2019, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held talks on this topic with his Japanese counterpart Toshimitsu Motegi.

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Source: Izvestia