Japan: New Sanctions Against Russia Take Effect

Russian Ambassador to Japan Nikolai Nozdrev: “We will take action to respond to threats”

L'ambasciatore Nikolaj Nozdrev

The ban on imports of non-industrial Russian diamonds came into effect in Japan on May 10. The measure, which is part of political, economic, and commercial sanctions against the Kremlin, follows a ban on exports from Japan to Russia of more than 160 categories of goods that took effect in April. As explained by Fumio Kishida’s Japanese government, the goal is to “block the export of goods that contribute to Russia’s industrial base.” Recent restrictions have banned the export of motor oil, steel pipes, and various types of boats.

Moscow is learning about the economic war launched against Russia by the United States and its allies in a very broad geopolitical context, including military threats. This was announced by Russian Ambassador to Japan Nikolai Nozdrev on the occasion of Victory Day, which is celebrated in Russia on May 9. “We are closely following the intensification of Japanese-American maneuvers, including those involving external players, near our Far Eastern borders. We regularly warn Tokyo that if such activities continue, we will be forced to take countermeasures to block military threats against Russia.”

In recent days, Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered a tactical nuclear weapons exercise involving troops stationed near Ukraine. “During the exercise, a set of measures will be carried out to practice the preparation and use of non-strategic nuclear weapons,” the Defense Ministry said in a press release in Moscow. These nuclear drills “are a response to Western statements about sending troops to Ukraine,” Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. “Macron’s statements about possibly sending troops to Ukraine mark a series of unprecedented tensions,” Peskov added. The Kremlin spokesman also called “unfounded” accusations circulated by the British newspaper Financial Times, according to which Moscow is planning sabotage in Europe. Finally, the presidential spokesman said that the Defense Ministry was “analyzing” reports that “French troops have already been deployed and are participating in the fighting near Chasov Yar in eastern Ukraine.”