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Japanese PM Shinzo Abe on Iran trip amid Tehran-Washington tensions over oil sanctions Updated: 2019-06-13 10:11:00 KST

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe arrived in Iran on Wednesday for a two-day trip, becoming the first Japanese leader to visit since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
Citing high-level Iranian officials, Reuters reported Tehran would ask Tokyo to mediate between Iran and the U.S. amid tensions over Washington's oil sanctions on the country.
The Iranian government, however, made it clear that Abe's visit was planned in advance and will be a crucial opportunity to build friendly ties between the two countries.
The visit is crucial for Japan as the country imports nearly all of its oil, mostly from the Middle East, and must tread a fine line as it doesn't want to anger Washington, its strongest ally and security partner.
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