Russia’s Vladimir Putin late again to summit with Shinzo Abe

Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) meets with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (L) in Vladivostok, Russia on Monday. Photo by Kirill Kudryavtsev/EPA-EFE/Pool

Sept. 11 (UPI) — Russian President Vladimir Putin was late to a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe by about two and a half hours, according to multiple Japanese press reports.

The Russian leader, whose tardiness has become legendary, kept Abe waiting during a Russia-Japan summit at the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok on Monday, Kyodo News and Yomiuri Shimbun reported.

Abe and his officials may have not been pleased — the Japanese were “dealt a setback” because of Putin’s delayed arrival, according to reports.

Putin was also late for a December 2016 summit in Japan, arriving three hours later than scheduled.

In 2014, Putin was late to a summit with German Chancellor Angela Merkel by four hours and 15 minutes, but was only 35 minutes late for a summit with U.S. President Donald Trump in July.

Putin has also been late to meetings with South Korean leaders, including former President Park Geun-hye by one hour and 45 minutes, and current South Korean President Moon Jae-in by 34 minutes, according to Yonhap.

During the Russia-Japan summit Monday, Abe called for an end to a territorial dispute over the Kuril Islands, while Putin said there is a need to “take precautions” to find a solution, according to Japanese press reports.

Russia’s Tass news agency reported Moscow and Tokyo are considering Japan’s involvement in liquefied natural gas projects in the Kamchatka region.

Japan is “already involved” in a LNG project in the Irkutsk region, Putin said.


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