"I decided to go and felt that the environment on the peninsula was absolutely peaceful. And having seen proof of real facts on the peninsula and I would like to pass these facts on to the Japanese community, to people around the world," Hatoyama said during a Friday meeting with Sergei Naryshkin, the speaker of Russia's lower house of parliament, who is on a visit to Tokyo.
Hatoyama stressed that he will strive to contribute to the development of cultural exchanges between Russia and Japan.
Crimea seceded from Ukraine to rejoin Russia in March 2014 following a referendum in which over 96 percent of voters supported the move. The West labeled the vote an illegal "annexation." Moscow has stated that the referendum fully complied with international law.
Western countries, as well as Japan, have imposed sanctions targeting Russia's banking, energy and defense sectors after Crimea's reunification with Russia.
Japan’s former prime minister Yukio Hatoyama has urged Japan to lift anti-Russia sanctions and recognize the Crimea referendum.