Source Pravda.Ru

Russian and Japanese frontier guards hold joint training at sea

Russian and Japanese ships trained jointly Thursday in detaining violator ships and preventing drug and arms trafficking near the coast of Hokkaido, a source in the 1st regional headquarters of Japan's coast guards, situated in the city of Otaru, told RIA Novosti on the phone on Thursday.

According to the source, two Russian ships, the Sokol guard-ship and the Korsakov frontier vessel, were involved in the exercise. The Japanese side provided four patrol ships and two coast guard planes for the training operations in the Ishikari Bay.

The 1st visit by the Russian ships to Hokkaido is to finish on June 6th. Scheduled for June 4th, the manoeuvres were put off till Thursday due to severe winds.

Japan hopes to continue cooperation with Russia, including in training at sea, Yoshiaki Hashimoto, head of the first regional HQ told journalists.

In a friendly tug of war and arm wrestling the Russians won, the representative of the coast guard service in the city of Otaru said.

* The two countries' frontier services began mutual visits three years ago. In 2001 Japanese ships arrived in the port of Vladivostok, and in 2002 called on the Isle of Sakhalin. At the same time Russian vessels visited the port of Tokyo twice.