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Russia strengthens military base near Japan due to support from Ukraine – vopbuzz

Russia strengthens military base near Japan due to support from.cms

NEW DELHI: Russia is boosting its military capabilities in the disputed Kuril Islands, strategically located north of Japan, by establishing a network of surveillance bases. This development is seen as a reaction to Japan’s support for Ukraine. ongoing conflict There. The new bases are equipped with advanced surveillance systems similar to those used by the United States. Russia Black Sea The squadron will monitor Ukraine’s activities, including tracking drones and identifying targets for missiles.
Russian defense minister Sergei Shoigu confirmed the construction in an announcement by state news agency TASS on Friday. The Kuril Islands, which were captured by Soviet troops towards the end of World War II, have long been a matter of contention between Japan and Russia. According to the South China Morning Post, the islands’ proximity to Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost prefecture, increases the strategic importance of this development.
Analysts suggest that this move by Russia is partly intended to show the repercussions of Japan’s support for Ukraine. “Russia is looking for any way to ‘punish’ Japan for supporting international sanctions and providing support to Ukraine, such as banning the import of Japanese seafood,” said James Brown, a professor of international relations at Temple University who specializes in Russian relations. said. Tokyo campus. He added: “Moscow wants to show Japan that its actions in support of Ukraine come at a cost, and that these costs are not in Japan’s interest.”
According to the SCMP report, surveillance bases not only strengthen military power, but also aim to closely monitor regional activities, especially Japan and its ally, the USA. “These bases will be the eyes and ears of northern Japan, keeping Russia up to date on what Japan is doing based on radar signals and, by extension, what its ally the United States is doing as well,” Professor Garren Mulloy said. international relations at Daito Bunka University.
The Kuril Islands span over 1,150 km (715 mi) and are seen as key to protecting the Sea of ​​Okhotsk, which Russia considers a special region vital to its naval strategy. “Russia has come to view the Sea of ​​Okhotsk as its own private space, and that is important because they can almost guarantee that it is free of foreign submarines from any other country and a stronghold for their own ballistic missile submarines,” Mulloy said. said. .
Despite strategic expansions, the construction of new bases has reignited a long-running territorial dispute over islands that Japan calls the Northern Territories. The dispute prevented the two countries from signing a formal peace treaty that would officially end World War II. There are intermittent talks over the future of the islands and varying expectations regarding the return of the territory to Japan.
As Russia consolidated its position, there was speculation about a possible visit by President Vladimir Putin to the Kurils to confirm Moscow’s claim, although no official plans have been announced. Mulloy speculated about Putin’s travel habits, saying, “Putin is afraid of flying and is extremely careful when traveling, so I’m not sure if he will make the visit.”
The intensification of military and surveillance activities in the Kuril Islands marks a significant period in Russian-Japanese relations and highlights broader geopolitical tensions affected by the situation in Ukraine.
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