Ja­pan leader Abe vows Arc­tic, Rus­sia co­op­er­a­tion in Fin­land

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

HELSINKI: Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe yes­ter­day pledged to in­crease co­op­er­a­tion with Fin­land in Arc­tic is­sues and on fur­ther­ing Rus­sian re­la­tions, af­ter talks with Fin­nish Pres­i­dent Sauli Ni­in­isto. Abe noted that Fin­land is cur­rently chair­ing the Arc­tic Coun­cil and said his coun­try would in­crease its role in the agency by “pos­i­tively con­tribut­ing more than in the past to (its) ac­tiv­i­ties.” “We will be en­hanc­ing our co­op­er­a­tion in the area of the en­vi­ron­ment re­gard­ing the Arc­tic re­gions,” Abe said in pre­pared state­ments by the two lead­ers.

Ni­in­isto said that the two coun­tries signed sev­eral agree­ments, in­clud­ing on de­vel­op­ing en­vi­ron­men­tal co­op­er­a­tion. Abe con­grat­u­lated Fin­land on this year’s 100th an­niver­sary of in­de­pen­dence from Rus­sia, with which it shares a 1,300 kilo­me­ter bor­der, not­ing that Rus­sia is “an im­por­tant neigh­bor for both of our na­tions. ““We reaf­firmed our close col­lab­o­ra­tion in our re­la­tion­ship with Rus­sia,” he said. Nei­ther leader gave any de­tails of the con­tent of their talks. Be­fore ar­riv­ing in Fin­land, Abe met with Swedish Prime Min­is­ter Ste­fan Lofven in Stock­holm, where the two lead­ers de­manded that North Korea halt mis­sile tests, and pledged in­creased co­op­er­a­tion in the UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil. They also agreed to com­bat ter­ror­ism to­gether.—AP

HELSINKI: Fin­nish Pres­i­dent Sauli Ni­in­isto and Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe are seen with in­ter­preters dur­ing their lun­cheon at the Pres­i­den­tial Palace in Helsinki, Fin­land yes­ter­day.—AFP

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