Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will pay a surprise visit to Ukraine on Tuesday to express “solidarity and unwavering support,” according to Japan’s foreign office.
According to the ministry, Kishida, as a member of the Group of Seven nations, will express unity and support for Ukraine following Russia’s invasion more than a year ago.
Kishida will express “his respect for the courage and perseverance of the Ukrainian people standing up to defend their homeland,” according to a statement from the foreign ministry.
While Vladimir Putin and Chinese leader Xi Jinping planned more talks on Tuesday after a Kremlin dinner where the isolated Russian president curried favour with his most powerful ally in the face of Western opposition to the war in Ukraine.
Putin said Russia is considering China’s proposal for resolving the situation in Ukraine, while western leaders have raised doubts on Beijing’s role as a peacemaker.
According to AP news agency, Russia is planing to hold an informal meeting of the UN Security Council in early April to dicuss “the real situation” of Ukrainian children taken to Russia.
The Russian overtures comes in response to the International Criminal Court issuing an arrest warrant for President Vladimir Putin for war crimes related to the children’s abduction but Russia’s UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia told a news conference Monday the issue was “totally overblown.”
According to an operational report from the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Russia launched 21 air and 9 missile strikes in the last 24 hours. The report said there were no civilian casualties. One strike was in the city of Sloviansk, and another hit Kramatorsk, which damaged seven multi-story buildings and three private cars.
The military says the probability of missile strikes across Ukraine remains quite high.