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At the meeting of Eiki Nestor, the President of the Riigikogu with Masaaki Yamazaki, the President of the House of Councillors of the National Diet of Japan, it was emphasized that the disaster with the Malaysian passenger flight has shown that the conflict in Ukraine poses a threat to the security situation in the whole world. Nestor acknowledged Japan for sharing the common values with the Western countries in regard to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea. Yamazaki said that Japan has the same position about the Ukrainian crisis as Estonia. 

Nestor appreciated the connections that Estonia and Japan already have in the fields of sports and culture. “The most successful ambassador in the relations between our countries has been the distinguished sumo wrestler Kaido Höövelson alias Baruto, who is well-known both in Japan and in his homeland Estonia,” Nestor said. Another Estonian ambassador is the composer Arvo Pärt, who received the Praemium Imperiale, the eminent arts prize awarded by the imperial family of Japan, in music in 2014. 

Nestor and Yamazaki highly valued the existing political, economic and cultural cooperation between the two countries. Nestor also pointed out that the interest in Japan among the young people of Estonia is growing. It can be seen in the cooperation in the fields of education and research, and also in the relevant theses that have been defended at the universities. Nestor explained that the economic relations of recent years have increased thanks to the cooperation projects based on trading in pollution quotas. 

Nestor and Yamazaki expressed their satisfaction that there are active friendship groups in both parliaments that take care of the parliamentary relations between the two countries. There are connections both at the level of MPs and the parliamentary committees. Nestor considered it important that the two countries should cooperate in order to prepare the basis for the agreement for the avoidance of double taxation.  

The Japanese delegation expressed their wish for the comprehensive development of the relations between the two parliaments. During the visit, they showed special interest in expanding the defence cooperation in the field of cyber security. 

The President of the House of Councillors of the National Diet of Japan Masaaki Yamazaki is on an official visit to Estonia at the invitation of the President of the Riigikogu Eiki Nestor. The Japanese delegation also includes members of the House of Councillors Kensei Mizote and Yuichiro Uozumi and the Director General of the International Affairs Department Hidenobu Sobashima. 

The visitors also met with Marko Mihkelson, the Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, and Sven Sester, the Deputy Chairman of the Estonia-Japan Parliamentary Group. They also had meetings with the Minister of Defence Sven Mikser and the Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Paet. The Japanese delegation will visit the ICT Demo Centre and the NATO Cyber Defence Centre. They are also planning to visit the attractions of Tallinn. 

Photos of the meeting can be viewed at: https://fotoalbum.riigikogu.ee/v/2014/Riigikogu+esimees+Eiki+Nestor/Masaaki+Yamazaki/

The Riigikogu Press Service