Japan Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to Meet Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Kyiv

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida delivers a speech in New Delhi on Monday.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will make a short visit to Kyiv for a summit with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the Japanese government announced Tuesday.

In his meeting with Zelenskyy, Kishida is expected to express Japan’s intention to take the lead in continuing support for Ukraine as the chair of the Group of Seven industrialized countries and to condemn the invasion by Russia.

Kishida was asked to visit Ukraine during a telephone call with Zelenskyy on Jan. 6. The leaders of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, France and Italy have already visited Kyiv since Feb. 24 last year, when the Russian invasion of Ukraine began.

Japan is the only G7 country whose leader has not met Zelenskyy in person.

Ukraine will be a key issue at the Group of Seven summit to be held in Hiroshima City in May. By visiting Kyiv before then, Kishida aims to show the world that the G7 is united in its support for Ukraine.

Kishida was to meet Polish President Andrzej Duda on Wednesday in Poland, before returning Japan on Thursday morning. He and Duda are expected to confirm the strengthening of bilateral cooperation, including in response to Russia.