Finnish Prime Minister arrives in Japan on Tuesday

Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin arrives in Tokyo on Tuesday for her first visit to Japan. She is due to meet Prime Minister Kishida Fumio the next day.

Kishida and Marin are expected to discuss their countries’ responses to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Finland shares a 1,300 kilometer border with Russia. The Nordic nation has maintained its military neutrality, but Moscow’s decision on Ukraine has prompted it to consider joining NATO.

According to the Finnish public broadcaster, the latest opinion poll shows that 76% of respondents are in favor of NATO membership, up 14 percentage points from the previous survey in March. Only 12% oppose it.

Local media are reporting that the country is expected to announce its decision to apply for NATO membership, along with Sweden.

Russia reacted strongly to this decision. Its military aircraft have recently repeatedly entered Finnish airspace. Fears are growing over the possibility of military action by Moscow before Finland joins NATO.

Marin hopes to exchange with Kishida on how to respond to Moscow and support Ukraine.

She will also meet business leaders and university students during her three-day stay in Japan.