Japan Might Withdraw Her Support of Russian Reforms

According to the information received by the Russian Foreign Ministry from Tokyo, a group of Japanese experts has recommended to the Japanese Foreign Minister that the Cooperation Commission and a number of projects in support of Russian reforms be discontinued. The Cooperation Commission is an international organisation headquartered in Tokyo. It was set up by the agreement between Japan and twelve other countries, all former soviet republics, in January 1993 with the aim of aiding the CIS states in carrying out market transition reforms. The Commission has been regularly commandeering Japanese experts for fieldwork and inviting local specialists for training sessions in Japan. It has also provided tons of humanitarian and medical aid to many regions of the ex-USSR. When commenting to the Japanese media on the situation, Russian Foreign Ministry's official representative Alexander Yakovenko said the Ministry were confident that Japan would consider the proposal carefully and consult the other parties to the agreement prior to making any definite decisions. Apparently, no decision has been made yet, and the current discussion of the Commission's activity 'is mainly due to Japan's internal policies.' Yakovenko noted that according to the information they had received, the experts' proposal concerned a number of options as to the Commission's activity, 'its liquidation being but one of them.'

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