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Japan’s foreign minister to attend NATO meeting in early April

THE JAPAN TIMES/KYODO – Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi is planning to attend a meeting in Brussels with his counterparts from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) countries and its partners in early April, sources with knowledge of the matter said.

Hayashi aims to affirm increased coordination with NATO over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine through means such as the enforcement of sanctions on Moscow and the hosting of evacuees from the Eastern European country, the sources said on Monday.

Besides Japan, foreign ministers from NATO partner nations such as South Korea and Australia are expected to take part in the gathering, the sources said, adding that Hayashi is considering meeting bilaterally with other participants.

Top diplomats to attend the upcoming meeting are expected to warn Russia not to use chemical, biological and nuclear weapons in Ukraine, the sources said, amid growing concerns over such threats as Russian forces’ advances on Kyiv and other cities have stalled in the face of fierce resistance since the invasion began on February 24.

Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi. PHOTO: THE JAPAN TIMES/KYODO