Russia warns of countermeasures against Japan's 'fast-tracked militarization'

Russia says Japan is "embarking on a track of fast-tracked militarization" and has warned the administration of Prime Minister Kishida Fumio that it may take countermeasures.

Russia's deputy foreign minister for Asian affairs, Andrey Rudenko, made the remark in an interview with Russia's state-run Tass news agency released Tuesday.

Tass quoted him as saying, "We have taken note of the Kishida administration's accelerated implementation of abandoning a policy of peaceful development" and "embarking on a track of fast-tracked militarization."

Rudenko said if this practice continues, Russia "will be left with no choice other than to take adequate countermeasures in order to block military threats."

He cited concrete examples, including Japan's revisions to key defense documents to allow it to launch counterstrikes, and Kishida's policy of increasing defense spending.

In the interview, Rudenko also addressed the Northern Territories issue and the possibility of resuming peace treaty talks with Japan.

Tass quoted Rudenko as saying, "It is absolutely obvious that it is impossible to discuss the signing of such a document with a country that takes an openly unfriendly posture."

Japan has been imposing sanctions on Russia in line with the United States and European countries, prompting Moscow to designate it as an "unfriendly country."

Regarding the Northern Territories, Russia controls the four islands, Japan claims them. The Japanese government maintains the islands are an inherent part of Japan's territory. It says the islands were illegally occupied after World War Two.