Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on Tuesday pledged to provide heating equipment and other protection against the cold to Ukraine, as the country's war with Russia heads into the winter months.
"Japan has been providing support to Ukraine in preparation for the coming harsh winter...Furthermore, Japan will continue to provide assistance to Ukraine based on our country's unique knowledge and strengths," Kishida said in a video message to an international conference on aid for Ukraine held in Berlin.
To support Ukraine's reconstruction efforts since Russia invaded in late February, Kishida said Tokyo has shared with Kyiv its experience in sorting and reusing debris from the massive earthquake and tsunami that devastated northeastern Japan in March 2011.
"Ukraine can make use of debris resulting from the Russian invasion," he said.
The message was sent to the International Expert Conference on Recovery, Reconstruction and Modernization of Ukraine, hosted by Germany and the European Commission, the executive branch of the European Union.
Japan will take over the rotating presidency of the Group of Seven from Germany next year. The G-7 also involves Britain, Canada, France, Italy, the United States and the European Union.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who took part in the conference virtually, said Russia's attacks have destroyed over a third of facilities in the energy sector.
"Russia destroys everything to make it harder for us to survive this winter," Zelenskyy said.
Ukraine has said it needs an estimated $750 billion for reconstruction and that the figure is expected to increase due to the prolonged war.
Kishida reiterated that Japan "strongly condemns" Russia's missile attacks on civilians and civilian facilities in Ukraine as well as its threats to use nuclear weapons.
"It is important for us to be united in strongly promoting support for Ukraine as well as sanctions against Russia," he said.
"Japan will make utmost efforts and positive contributions, and actively lead discussions within the international community" for the speedy restoration of peace and reconstruction in Ukraine.
Following Kishida's pledge, Ukrainian lawmakers visiting Japan showed gratitude when they held a press conference in Tokyo before wrapping up their 12-day trip to the country on Wednesday.
"We have been grateful for the support" expressed by Kishida, said Galyna Mykhailiuk, co-head of the Ukraine-Japan parliamentary friendship group.
During the first such visit by Ukrainian lawmakers to an Asian nation since Russia invaded its neighbor, they met Japanese lawmakers and government officials to seek further support amid their nation's battle against the invasion.
Mentioning Japan's past experience of rebuilding from the 2011 disaster, which also triggered a crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex, Mykhailiuk showed her expectation that it will play a major role in reconstructing her nation after the war is over.
"We are sure that we will win the war. That is why it is highly important for us nowadays already to start planning on how reconstruction will be provided to Ukraine," she said.