Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and French President Francois Hollande agreed to focus on dialogue to settle the dispute in Ukraine //
The agreement was reached during their one-hour meeting May 5 on the situation in Ukraine and security issues.
“The door for diplomatic settlement is still open,” Abe said in a joint news conference after the meeting in the presidential palace. “We demand that Russia take that path.”
Hollande said: “The only method to persuade (Russian) President Vladimir Putin is through dialogue. It is important to calm down the situation.”
Abe and Hollande confirmed that they will work with other G7 leaders to ensure this month's presidential election in Ukraine is conducted peacefully and democratically with participation of all regions.
Abe said he and Hollande agreed that growing security concerns in Europe and East Asia mean close cooperation between Japan and France is more necessary than ever.
He said they want to contribute to global peace and stability as well as economic growth and cultural development
The two leaders emphasized the importance of diplomatic talks apparently because they have complicated relations with Russia.
Japan plans to hold negotiations with Russia on sovereignty over the Northern Territories, a group of islands off eastern Hokkaido that are occupied by Moscow but also claimed by Tokyo.