MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 12th January, 2019) The defense and foreign affairs ministers of France and Japan in a joint communique expressed interest in maintaining the sustainable dialogue with Russia on the high level.
On Friday, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian and Defense Minister Florence Parly met with their Japanese counterparts, Taro Kono and Takeshi Iwaya, at the fifth round of consultations in the "two plus two" format.
"The two countries share the interest of supporting sustainable dialogue on the high level with Russia. In order for it to be productive, this dialogue should remain strong and be in line with the principles, shared by France and Japan, which are based on the respect for law," the communique, published on the French Foreign Ministry's website, read.
The statement noted that the four ministers had reaffirmed their support for the G7 declaration on the situation in the Kerch Strait. The two states called for restraint and respect for international law in order to avoid escalation due to the incident, in which crew of three Ukrainian ships had been detained by the Russian authorities after they illegally entered the Russian waters. The communique called on Moscow to release the Ukrainian seamen and ships.
The four ministers have also reiterated their support for the Minsk agreements on the settlement of the conflict in Ukraine's Donbas region, as well as efforts to resolve the crisis as part of the Normandy Four format and the Trilateral Contact Group.