MOSCOW, Aug. 13 (Xinhua) -- Russia's ongoing military exercises in Far East are not a threat to any country, including Japan, Russian Foreign Ministry said Wednesday.
"We see no reason for the Japanese side to express concern," deputy director of the ministry's information and press department Maria Zakharova said in a statement.
"Russia can choose by itself where to hold the drills within its own territory, so we refute the protests of the Japanese Foreign Ministry," Interfax news agency quoted Zakharova as saying.
She stressed that the South Kuril Islands where the exercises have been held belongs to Russia in line with the results of World War II.
Zakharova added that there was nothing extraordinary in the current Russian Armed Forces drills at the Kuril Islands, as similar exercises are held regularly.
Earlier Wednesday, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the military drills on the islands that Tokyo calls the Northern Territories were unacceptable, and the official complaint to Russia from Japanese Foreign Ministry was as per his instruction.
The drills are the largest Russia has conducted in several years, involving more than 1,000 soldiers, 100 military vehicles and five attack helicopters. The drills are aimed at bolstering Russia's ability to defend its remote islands.