Russia disappointed by Japan's sanctions, says it will respond

MOSCOW Tue Apr 29, 2014 7:26am EDT

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MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia voiced disappointment on Tuesday over Japan's decision to impose visa bans on 23 people over the crisis in Ukraine and promised to respond to what it called a "clumsy step" taken by Tokyo under pressure from the West.

"Tokyo's decision ... is viewed with disappointment and, naturally, will not go unanswered," Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said in a statement.

"This clumsy step was clearly taken under outside pressure and goes against Tokyo's declarations about the importance of developing ... relations with Russia. We want to underscore: It is counterproductive to speak to us in the language of sanctions."

(Writing by Steve Gutterman, Editing by Timothy Heritage)

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