US secondary sanctions ‘main obstacle’ in Iran-Japan ties

Kamal Kharrazi, the head of Iran's Strategic Council on Foreign Relations, has said the “main obstacle” hindering further progress in Iran-Japan relations is the threat of secondary sanctions by the United States.

Kharrazi made the remarks during a meeting with Japan's Ambassador to Tehran, Kazutoshi Aikawa, on Monday, where they discussed various regional and international matters, as well as the current status of bilateral relations.

“Despite some challenges arising from the secondary sanctions, there are clear opportunities for further cooperation between the two countries,” Kharrazi said, referring to the sanctions imposed by the US on nations and entities engaging with Iran.

Kharrazi also discussed the ramifications of the Ukraine conflict on the Far East region and proposed that the best way to resolve territorial disputes between Japan and Russia over the four islands in the Pacific Ocean is through “direct negotiations between the two countries.”

Following World War II, Russia incorporated the Kuril Islands into its territory, while Japan refers to them as the Northern Territories, considering them “occupied by Russia.”

In response, Ambassador Aikawa presented Tokyo's stance on the Ukraine conflict and its potential implications for Japan and the surrounding region.

He pointed out that since the start of the conflict in February last year, Russia has suspended negotiations with Japan concerning the Kuril Islands.

News ID 195740


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