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Russia offers Japan to sign peace treaty to end formal WWII hostilities

Tokyo, in turn, wants Russia to leave Kurile islands, as both countries are amidst the territorial dispute over these territories
17:04, 12 September 2018

Russian President Vladimir Putin during a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, 15 December 2016
Sputnik

Russian and Japanese leaders found themselves in a new round of talks over Kuril islands, or the Northern Territories, as Japan refers to them. Reuters reported that on Wednesday.

It seems to have started with Putin's offer to sign the peace treaty to end the formal WWII hostilities - by the end of the year. The Russian president said this during an economic forum session in Vladivostok, Russia's Far East.

'Both Abe and Putin say they want a solution to the dispute. The Japanese leader has said a deal would unlock trade and investment from Japanese companies for Russia, which is isolated from Western investment because of sanctions. But for Putin, who casts himself publicly as a fierce champion of Russia’s national interests, giving up the islands would risk a political backlash at home', Reuters wrote.

Related: Russia holds off Japanese delegation in southern Kuril Islands

The news agency added that 'after Putin had made the offer, Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said: 'I don’t want to comment on what President Putin said...However, our position that the Northern Territories issue is resolved before any peace treaty remains unchanged'.'

Russia and Japan have been involved in the territorial dispute over Kurile islands since the end of the Second World War.

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Related: Prime Minister of Japan called on Putin to put an end to dispute about Kuril Islands

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