Moscow, Tokyo maintaining trusting dialogue on missile defense - Russian ambassador
Moscow and Tokyo are maintaining a trusting dialogue on missile defense issues and trying to find a joint approach to the matter, Russian Ambassador to Japan Yevgeny Afanasyev said.
"We are having a conversation on the matter, and it is very sincere. This dialogue implies not only an exchange of positions and information but also an attempt to find some possible common approaches," Afanasyev said in an interview with Interfax.
"We have reached a level of dialogue with Japan at which we can discuss any problems, including missile defense, in a trusting and open manner," he said.
"This can be illustrated by the contacts in the 2+2 format, which I mentioned earlier," Afanasyev said.
It was reported earlier that Russia had repeatedly expressed its concerns about Japan's and the U.S.' plans to build a regional missile defense system, citing a growing threat emanating from North Korea as a pretext.
Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said earlier in an interview with Interfax that a new missile defense system on which Japan was working together with the U.S. was exclusively defensive.
"The Japanese missile defense system is an exclusively defensive in nature and is targeted only against those intending to launch a missile attack against our country. It does not pose any threat to other countries having no such intentions," Kishida said.