Beltway 360 – US unease at Russo-Japan ties March 2019


Washington Unease on Russian-Japanese Ties

Washington is puzzled and somewhat concerned about Japanese Prime Minister Abe’s continuing efforts to engage Russian President Putin. While Japan joined the post-Crimea sanctions against Russia and agreed to expel Russia from the G-8, these multilateral actions have had little impact on Tokyo’s bilateral ties with Moscow and effectively no impact on Abe’s ambitions to forge a deal on the Northern Territories leading to a peace treaty with Moscow. Most of Washington thinks the potential for such a deal is very low, and many here would prefer that Tokyo replace its engagement policy toward Russia with more sanctions.