Japan’s Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi has called on democratic nations to have a tougher, more stringent response if Russian aggression against Ukraine does not stop, more so if the Kremlin decides to invade Ukraine.

Hayashi stated that if Japan, along with other democratic nations, does not take a tough response, it will only empower China to exert further control on disputed territories in Asia and neighboring countries, making them beholden to Chinese influence.

“If something happens on the Ukraine border, that outcome might affect other people’s calculations in Asia,” Hayashi said in an interview with “We have to be very sure about this,” said Hayashi in a report with The Washington Post.

US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken (center) with Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa (right) and South Korean Foreign Minister Chung Eui-young (left) in Honolulu, Hawaii, February 12, 2022 (US State Department via The Diplomat). Source: https://thediplomat.com/2022/02/in-trilateral-talks-japan-south-korea-us-reaffirm-alliance-on-north-korea/
US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken (center) with Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa (right) and South Korean Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong (left) in Honolulu, Hawaii, February 12, 2022 (US State Department photo by Ron Przysucha via The Diplomat)

This report comes after the Japanese Foreign Minister met with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and South Korean Foreign Minister Chung Eui-yong last Saturday in Hawaii. The meeting’s main purpose was to discuss North Korea and concerns about its military missile testing, which has since increased in frequency. Other concerns were also discussed as part of their collaboration efforts, one being a unified stance against the Myanmar crisis where a military junta currently rules, China’s aggression in the Pacific, as well as the Russian aggression against Ukraine where Russian troops have begun to withdraw a day before the start of the alleged invasion.