Japan’s Shinzo Abe meets with King Salman amid regional tensions

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Saudi Arabia for talks with King Salman on Sunday amid a spike in tensions between the US and Iran.

Japan has sought to remain politically neutral as regional relations have become stretched following US President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from Iran’s nuclear deal with world powers. It has a deep alliance with the US, as well as ties with Iran, which until 2017 supplied Japan with about 5 per cent of its crude oil imports.

Japan plans to deploy naval forces, a destroyer and two patrol aeroplanes off the coasts of Yemen and Oman to help protect its energy supplies, while keeping away from directly patrolling the Strait as the US does.
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