Japan on Tuesday imposed additional sanctions against Russia for failing to defuse the crisis in Ukraine following the downing of a Malaysia Airlines jet last month.

The United States and the European Union have also stepped up pressure on Russia with widened sanctions.

The decision by the Abe administration froze assets held in the country by 40 individuals, including former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, and two groups directly involved in Russia's annexation of Crimea and the instability in eastern Ukraine.

The government also began requiring approval for imports of products made in the Crimea region and the city of Sevastopol.

Japan implemented a set of measures in March to punish Russia for intervening in Ukraine, including suspension of talks for easing visa issuance conditions and freezing the planned launch of talks for an investment accord.

It also followed the United States and the European Union in taking further steps against Russia in April, denying visas to 23 Russian nationals, including government officials.