Japanese Consul General Blindfolded During Questioning by Russian Security Service
The Russian security service FSB has arrested the Japanese consul general, Motoki Tatsunori, in the port city of Vladivostok on suspicion of espionage.
According to the state news agency Ria Novosti, he was caught in the act “when, for a fee, he collected classified information about the impact of Western sanctions on the economic situation in the Russian Federation’s the Far East”.
The confidential information related, among other things, to Russian cooperation with an unnamed Asia-Pacific country. Russia has protested with the Japanese government. The diplomat, who admitted to violating Russian law in an FSB video, has been declared an unwanted person and must leave the country within 48 hours.
Hirokazu Matsuno, a spokesman for the Japanese government, says the diplomat was, among other things, “blindfolded and intimidated”, “which is a violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations”. Japan demands an apology and has asked the Russian ambassador for an explanation. Japan’s foreign minister says the consul general did nothing illegal. He called the arrest “totally unacceptable”.