Japan tightens Russia sanctions after deadly missile strikes in Ukraine

TOKYO, Jan 27 (Reuters) - Japan tightened sanctions against Russia on Friday following its latest wave of missile attacks in Ukraine, adding goods to an export ban list and freezing the assets of Russian officials and entities.

The decision comes after Russia launched missile attacks in Ukraine killing at least 11 people on Thursday following a pledge by Germany and the United States to supply tanks that could help Ukraine counter any new Russian offensive.

"In light of the situation surrounding Ukraine and to contribute to international efforts to secure peace, Japan will implement export bans in line with other major nations," the Ministry of Economy Trade and Industry said in a release.

Among the new sanctions, Japan will prohibit shipments of items to 49 organizations in Russia from Feb. 3 that could be used to enhance its military capability.

Those will include products ranging from water cannons, gas exploration equipment and semiconductor equipment to vaccines, X-ray inspection equipment, explosives and robots, the ministry said.

Japan will also freeze the assets of three entities and 22 individuals in Russia, including aircraft company JSC Irkut Corp, surface-to-air missile maker MMZ Avangard, deputy defence minister Mikhail Mizintsev and justice minister Konstantin Chuychenko, along with 14 pro-Moscow individuals related to the "annexation" of parts of southeastern Ukraine region.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told warned of an unspecified impact on relations with an "unfriendly" Japan.

"Japan, from the very start of the situation, has taken its place in the circle of unfriendly countries. Inevitably, there will be consequences for bilateral relations," Peskov told reporters.

Reporting by Kantaro Komiya and Tim Kelly; Editing by Chang-Ran Kim, Robert Birsel

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