A striking change came over Moscow just hours after Donald Trump’s surprise election: Suddenly, the Russian capital was a hotbed of zealous supporters of the U.S. electoral process.
Throughout the campaign, Russia rooted for Trump as much as any other foreign country. According to the White House, Moscow also interfered as much as any other foreign country ever has in a U.S. election. But the Kremlin’s commentators — convinced that Hillary Clinton was going to win — had also trashed the U.S. election as dirty, corrupt and unable to produce a legitimate result.
Now that their man was in, and with Russian TV showing cheery Americans lining up to vote for Trump, they had to change their tune.
Moscow and Tokyo are thoroughly preparing the visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to Japan and the meeting between Russian President and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinz· Abe was largely dedicated to that, presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov said on Sunday.
Japan’s Foreign Minister is expected to come to Moscow shortly, who will also hold talks on preparation of the visit, Peskov said. "Many issues still have to be discussed, so that the president and the prime minister moved on "ready ground" during the visit," he said.
The trade turnover dropped 36% year-on-year, Putin said at the meeting. "The President noted that natural causes related to the global situation exist for that along with reasons conditioned by consequences of political steps of third nations," Peskov said. Specific cooperation projects were also discussed during talks, he added.
Russia and Japan are again holding consultations between their foreign and defense ministries, which will hopefully improve their bilateral ties, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Peru.
"We have brought back some cooperation instruments that help us move forward with bilateral relations," Putin said on the sidelines of Asia-Pacific leaders’ summit. "We also continue active work to implement your initiatives that aim to intensify our trade and economic cooperation," Putin told Abe, adding the Lima forum offered a "good opportunity" to review the progress made so far.
In his turn, Prime Minister Abe promised to welcome the Russian leader as a "dear friend" when he comes to Japan. Abe said Putin would be given a warm reception and treated to a hot spring bath. "I look forward to receiving you at a traditional Japanese hotel with a hot spring, and on the following day we will move to Tokyo and discuss economic issues," Abe promised.
The Japanese leader said political dialogue between Moscow and Tokyo had recently reenergized. Most recently, Russian parliament speaker Valentina Matviyenko and First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov travelled to Japan. "I expect today to discuss [Putin’s] next month’s visit, the peace pact, as well as trade and economic cooperation," Abe added. Vladimir Putin’s aide Yuri Ushakov said earlier the president was expected to go to Japan on December 15-16. Russia and Japan have been technically at war after failing to sign a peace treaty in the aftermath of World War Two.
Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov agreed Saturday to continue talks on concluding a peace treaty to end World War II until the summit between Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin takes place later this month.
“It’s not easy to bring closer the principal positions of the parties; the problem is complicated,” Lavrov said at a joint news conference following the talks in Moscow, underscoring the difficulty in resolving a dispute over islands off Hokkaido that are held by Russia but claimed by Japan.
Lavrov also said that there should not be excessive expectations for immediate progress in settling the issue and that bilateral work will continue and be reported to the two leaders, who will meet on Dec. 15 and 16 in Japan.
In their third meeting this year and the final direct ministerial talks before the Abe-Putin summit, Kishida also vowed efforts to “overcome the differences in positions of Japan and Russia and conclude the peace treaty by a mutually acceptable resolution.”
Russia has turned down Tokyo's latest attempt at dog diplomacy ahead of a summit between President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe later this month, an aide said, as the two leaders look to end a decades-old territorial row.
Japan had planned to give the Russian president -- who is known for being a canine lover -- a male Akita when he visits Japan on December 15 and 16, which will include a trip to Abe's home state of western Yamaguchi.
It was hoped the dog could accompany a female of the same breed named "Yume" -- which means "dream" in Japanese -- that Tokyo had presented to Putin four years ago as a thank you gift for Russia's help after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.