Japan’s prime minister pledges to tackle territorial issue with Russia

Japan’s prime minister pledges to tackle territorial issue with Russia

⁠ ‘It is regrettable that the territorial issue has still not been resolved and a peace treaty has not been signed,’ says Fumio Kishida

By Necva Tastan

ISTANBUL (AA) - Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said Wednesday that Tokyo remains committed to resolving a territorial issue and concluding a peace treaty with Russia.

Kishida spoke at the annual National Rally to Demand the Return of the Northern Territories, which comprise four northwestern Pacific islands, NHK news reported.

"It is regrettable that the territorial issue has still not been resolved and that a peace treaty has not been signed, even though 78 years have passed since the (Second World) War ended," he said.

He said that despite strained relations between Japan and Russia due to Moscow’s actions in Ukraine, his government "remains committed to pursuing these objectives."

Kishida also stressed prioritizing the resumption of exchange programs between Japan and Russia.

Russia has been locked in a territorial dispute with Japan over the Kuril Islands. The two countries have not signed a peace treaty since World War II.

At the 1945 Yalta Conference, the Soviet Union agreed that its forces would join the Western allies in the war against Japan and launch military operations on the eastern front. In exchange, it received some Japanese territories, including the Kuril Islands.

After the war, however, Japan rejected the Soviet Union’s sovereignty over the islands.

Due to the dispute, Russia and Japan have never signed a peace treaty and are technically still at war.

With both sides claiming the territories, the question of the Kurils’ sovereignty remains uncertain.

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