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The Nikkei View

Can Japan convince ASEAN to oppose Russia -- and potentially China?

Kishida's Southeast Asia diplomacy will be a major test case for the region's future

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, left, raises a toast with Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha in Bangkok on May 2.    © Kyodo

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida's itinerary during this Golden Week holiday is indicative of the country's role today. He has just concluded a visit to ASEAN members Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand. He heads on to Italy and the U.K.

As the Asian representative in the Group of Seven, Japan has an important mission to serve as a bridge between the West and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

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