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‘Unthinkable’ Russia would lose in Ukraine – Japan’s ex-PM – RT World News

Yoshiro Mori lamented that Tokyo sided with kyiv to the detriment of its relationship with Moscow

He is “almost unthinkable” that Russia would lose in the Ukraine conflict, said former Japanese Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori, questioning the US-led campaign to support kyiv, which Tokyo has signed up to.

“Is it good to put so much effort into Ukraine?” asked the former official, quoted by Japanese media. “It is almost unthinkable for Russia to lose” he said Wednesday at a meeting in Tokyo of the Japan-India Association, which he chaired.

The 85-year-old politician said he did not understand why Tokyo was ready to damage its relationship with Moscow after “we have come so far.” Russia and Japan have an unresolved territorial dispute and are technically still at war with each other.

Mori served as head of Japan’s government for just over a year between 2000 and 2001, his tenure mired in hostile media coverage of his gaffes. After stepping down, he was chosen to lead the organizing body for the 2020 Summer Olympics.

Despite criticism at home, Mori maintained good relations with the Russian government, thanks in part to a family connection. His father, who was mayor of a small Japanese town, had a passion for preserving the graves of Japanese soldiers in the Soviet Union. He found lifelong friends who had the same respect for the war dead across the border, and even requested that some of his ashes be buried in Russia.

The younger Mori reportedly had good chemistry with Russian President Vladimir Putin and was even tipped by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government to lay the groundwork for his 2017 state visit to Russia.

In November, Mori hit out at Japanese media for what he believes is one-sided coverage of the Ukrainian conflict, relying solely on US and European sources. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has not come under any criticism, he observed, although he “has caused many Ukrainians to suffer.”

Outgoing Prime Minister Fumio Kishida criticized Russia on Monday during a keynote address to Japan’s parliament. If he declared that his government would maintain “its policy of resolving the territorial question” regarding the disputed Kuril Islands, he also accused Moscow of “shaking the foundations of the international order” by launching the military operation in Ukraine. Kishida pledged his government’s continued support for kyiv in sanctioning Russia.

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