Japan Today
politics

Japan criticizes Russia's 'illegal occupation' of disputed isles

67 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© KYODO

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

67 Comments

Comments have been disabled You can no longer respond to this thread.

Japan criticizes Russia's 'illegal occupation' of disputed isles

Criticizes then what? Send troops and amphibious unit to retake those isles?

-14 ( +12 / -26 )

The US gave Stalin the Kuril

-16 ( +12 / -28 )

Instead of decades of bleating about these islands, maybe Japan should just be grateful it wasn't partitioned after the war with the Soviet Union controlling Hokkaido and Honshu all the way down to Tokyo. But, of course, it was the bomb that prevented that.

-10 ( +26 / -36 )

That sounds like a call to war. Japan was lucky not to be split in half, like East and West Germany. (That would have happened if US had not bombed Hiroshima, ending the war early.)

-21 ( +21 / -42 )

No don't bother criticizing. Take Russia to the ICJ. If they won't agree to settle the dispute through legal means let the world see it. Drop their bad image down further than it already is. Otherwise, amend paragraph 1 of Article 9 to remove "territorial disputes" and take them. Form an alliance with Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, any other nations that have had their territory stolen from them by Russia. Former Soviet satellites like Poland and the Baltic States would be happy to support it.

4 ( +23 / -19 )

Russia is not in the habit of returning stolen lands. It is so far away from returning the Northern Territories that it is actively engaged in an invasion to steal even more lands, this time from Ukraine. The only way to ever get them back is through war. Sad but true.

In the perfect world, Putin and his like are purged from Russia and it becomes a good European citizen whos first act is to return all stolen lands. Unfortunately that is closer to a dream than reality.

3 ( +21 / -18 )

YrralToday  04:57 pm JST

The US gave Stalin the Kuril

Totally false. The US gave Stalin the right to take what Russia had lost in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904/05, which included Sahkalin and the Northern Kuriles.This was established through the Cairo and Potsdam declarations.

However Stalin took the Southern Kuriles, which became Japanese territory in 1855 by a negotiated Treaty with Russia. Hence theUnited States considers the four islands Japanese territory under illegal Russian occupation.

10 ( +25 / -15 )

KISHIDA clearly wants WAR depite what originally Hokkaido was AINU territory, AINU the people that the Japanese killed!

-15 ( +13 / -28 )

indigoToday  05:11 pm JST

KISHIDA clearly wants WAR depite what originally Hokkaido was AINU territory, AINU the people that the Japanese killed!

What about all the Ainu on Sahkalin that Russia killed?

4 ( +20 / -16 )

Russia is not in the habit of returning stolen lands.

Communist countries are not in the habit of returning stolen lands.

Fixed for you. And some people here insist in saying China/Russia are not communist.

Honestly, do you know any communist country on Earth that wakes up one day and says "yeah, this is not working, guess we can stop and give up being communists" ?

-13 ( +6 / -19 )

Ossan the US do not care about Japanese island,we bought Alaska dirt cheap

-17 ( +5 / -22 )

In the perfect world, Putin and his like are purged from Russia and it becomes a good European citizen

And yes, communism corrupts the very core and values of societies they happen to poison. A shame to Russia, East Europe, a disgrace to all those once great white peoples! Russian culture is truly invaluable. Or it was until 1917.

-15 ( +3 / -18 )

@OssanAmericaToday 05:08 pm JST

That was so clearly NOT what was said in Yalta

The Kurile Islands shall be handed over to the Soviet Union.

No, ifs, buts, "only the parts by Greed", not "give priority to Potsdam and Cairo", not "Southern". Just "Kurile Islands."

Further, in 1952, the Japanese signed a treaty to renounce all rights to the same "Kurile Islands". The Soviets weren't a signatory, but you can't renounce and not renounce at the same time.

Frankly, the West doesn't have a real leg to stand on in this one, and their attempt to insist what's clearly not in the text is the "true interpretation" is best described as collective Russophobism.

-7 ( +13 / -20 )

The dispute ultimately boils down to the imprecise language in the San Francisco peace treaty. Japan renounced sovereignty over "the Kuril Islands" (not the Northern Kurils or just some of the Kurils). If Japan wanted to keep some of the islands, they could have insisted that the US occupation forces draft the treaty with more precision. As it stands, the Soviet Union's position that sovereignty had been abandoned across the entire chain is not unreasonable.

7 ( +14 / -7 )

Communist countries are not in the habit of returning stolen lands.

I am not one for defence of Russia in any of its recent guises but, in the interest of facts over ideology, the USSR gave up territory in Europe, most notably parts of Austria. This was as a result of the prior plans for partition of Europe between the 4 major victors.

5 ( +14 / -9 )

finally richToday 05:16 pm JST

Russia is not in the habit of returning stolen lands.

Communist countries are not in the habit of returning stolen lands.

Fixed for you. And some people here insist in saying China/Russia are not communist.

Well communist's may not give land back either, but the original statement that RUSSIA is not in the habit of returning stolen lands is acurate and factual.

4 ( +14 / -10 )

'He also said the government maintains its stance that it will seek to "resolve the territorial issue with Russia and sign a postwar peace treaty despite the current severe state of bilateral ties."'

Not even pretending they aren't trying to play both sides. haha. Anyway, much as I hate Russia, the islands are theirs. Period. Japan has had chances to get at least two back but refused as they wanted them all. Now, they have none, and it'll stay that way.

-14 ( +11 / -25 )

Neither Russia nor China are communist. They are dictatorships. The only way Japan will ever retrieve the Northern Territories is if Russia democratizes.

-10 ( +5 / -15 )

When Japanese politicians popularity is at record low levels, the sheepish citizens will be rallied against NK, SK or China. Now they have the Russia distraction.

japanese sanctions against Russia have cost an increase of my daily living costs to around 20%.

-13 ( +13 / -26 )

Sakhalin gas projects still going?

Come on,who are you fooling in this internet age,LDP?

-10 ( +9 / -19 )

"Japan criticizes Russia's 'illegal occupation' of disputed isles"

But please don't take the sanctions and anti-war rhetoric personally, and we're still SUPER keen on the gas projects together. Could you please just cooperate?

-15 ( +11 / -26 )

Oh dear Japan, and Kishida.

Just let it go. You're not having those islands back, I'm afraid.

Does anyone apart from then government care about those islands? Government aside, I've never heard anyone ever mention them in Japan. My wife is from Hokkaido and I've never seen or heard her family even broach this topic.

-14 ( +11 / -25 )

A bunch of old nationalists right wingers from LDP still trying to resume a “beautiful Japan” living in the past.

With such logic then Russia should return Kaliningrad to Germany (Königsberg) And Slovenia and Croatia Istria to Italy.

And then what? Every nation will start to reclaim some territories lost in wars.

The islands won’t be returned to Japan.

-15 ( +10 / -25 )

Yes, Russia should return the Islands. But I would rather the US stop their occupation of Japan. If the US leaves, perhaps Russia would be more inclined to return the Islands. One important reason why they refuse to return them is that they realize the US might build another military base on them.

1 ( +9 / -8 )

@M3M3M3 Nice argument there until you understand that the Soviet Union never signed The San Francisco Treaty.

Curiously both the victorious Republic of China and the People's Republic of China were not invited. I love my neighbor city San Francisco and the Opera House is splendid, but the treaty itself has issues that remain today.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

How about the Russians return the Northern Islands and the Japanese return Hokkaido to the Ainu?

Both never going to happen.

-7 ( +9 / -16 )

Russia doesn't give anything back, ask Ukraine

7 ( +15 / -8 )

Fumio you are pathetic liar.Japan will never get these islands back as long as US army bases will be in Japan.as simple as is.

-6 ( +10 / -16 )

When the Russians took the Northern Territories, they also took half of Sakhalin that was part of Japan. Sakhalin is where all the natural gas that Japan needs is. Why is there never any mention of this motive. Whoever controls the Northern Territories will also control Sakhalin.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

The Island was part of Russia before Japan annexed it.

Russia merely took back what was taken from it.

-10 ( +7 / -17 )

Russia should return those islands as soon as possible.

Also they should return south Sakhalin as it was a part of Japan before.

Japan has long since given up any claim to Sakhalin. That would be the same as Japan claiming the former Territory called Manchukuo in China. Or Taiwan, Korea etc. There's no claim.

But the Northern Territories are inalienable Japanese land - the islands were simply stolen by the Russians as spoils of war.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

Kazuaki ShimazakiToday  05:23 pm JST

@OssanAmericaToday 05:08 pm JST

That was so clearly NOT what was said in Yalta

The Kurile Islands shall be handed over to the Soviet Union.

No, ifs, buts, "only the parts by Greed", not "give priority to Potsdam and Cairo", not "Southern". Just "Kurile Islands."

Wrong.

"The three-power agreement signed at Yalta on February 11, 1945,3 is the primary basis of the Soviet Union’s present position in southern Sakhalin and the Kuril Islands. This agreement provided for the entry of the Soviet Union into war against Japan two or three months after termination of the war in Europe, on several conditions one of which was that “The Kuril islands shall be handed over to the Soviet Union.” There was, however, no definition of the term Kuril Islands. Since the Habomai Islands and Shikotan Island have been traditionally regarded as an island group distinct from the Kuril archipelago, and under Japanese control had a local administration as a political subdivision of Hokkaido separate from the Kuril island local administration, there appears no valid basis, either in the Yalta Agreement or in any other international understanding, justifying Soviet occupation of the Habomai-Shikotan area at the end of the war in addition to the Soviet occupation of the Kuril Islands. It can only be concluded, therefore, that the Soviet occupation of the Habomai Group and Shikotan Island was a unilateral action for which no more previous understanding had been reached than for Soviet occupation of the island of Hokkaido."

https://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments/frus1949v07p2/d106

2 ( +14 / -12 )

Uwe PaschenToday  06:55 pm JST

The Island was part of Russia before Japan annexed it.

Russia merely took back what was taken from it.

Wrong. They were never Russian.

"The Treaty of Shimoda (下田条約, Shimoda Jouyaku) (formally Treaty of Commerce and Navigation between Japan and Russia 日露和親条約, Nichi-Ro Washin Jouyaku) of February 7, 1855, was the first treaty between the Russian Empire, and the Empire of Japan"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Shimoda

"The treaty stipulated the Russo-Japanese border. In the course of the negotiations Putiatin proceeded from the assumption that the South-Kuril Islands historically belonged to Russia. But due to the unfavorable international situation provoked by the Crimea war, the islands of Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and a group of Khabomai islands went to Japan.

Sakhalin was announced the undivided demilitarized zone meeting the interests of Russia which continued to effectively colonize the island. Japan at the moment had no such a possibility due the absence of fleet. Later it started to populate intensively the territory of Sakhalin making thus the issue of its ownership quite acute.

Under the St.-Petersburg treaty of 1875, Sakhalin was given over to Russia in exchange for 18 Kuril Islands."

https://www.prlib.ru/en/history/619012

4 ( +15 / -11 )

Russia took them in the war, they declared war seperatly to the US, you didn't surrender to Russia you surrendered to the US, don't mix the facts.

Russia also offer 2 of the islands back, but Japan refused.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

It's called Land Grabbing, Land Stealing, and it is still going on these days across the globe, from Africa, to the Middle East, to South East Asia.

Russia, Israel, Sudan, Myanmar, Vietnam and more did it and some are still doing it.

Japan should demand their return in the court of law and not by force.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Good on PM Kishida... Russia did nothing to stop Japan during the War but as soon as they got the chance they went after everything they could get their hands on in both Japan and China. They'd have taken all of Hokkaido if the U.S. didn't get vocal. My Japanese mother in law's father was a Doctor in China during WWII. Yes, Japan was the aggressor and Yes they deserved repercussions after the war. But what happened to many Japanese soldiers in China after WWII was tragic. Russia came in at the very end and carted them off to Siberia to work in concentration camps. This is what happened to her father the Doctor... taken by the Russians and disappeared forever. When the Allies beat the Germans they treated regular German Soldiers much better than the Russians ever did. Russia is an evil country... one that does not work by the moral standards of the West. Yes, much of the West has done some pretty bad crap, but the Russians... they're evil and they are criminals.

2 ( +11 / -9 )

@deanzaZZR

Nice argument there until you understand that the Soviet Union never signed The San Francisco Treaty.

I'm well aware of that but it's not decisive because the renunciation of sovereignty falls into the category of unilateral declarations made to the world at large, even if it appears in a treaty. It's not just a standard treaty promise intended to be enforceable only by and against fellow signatories to the treaty.

Japan can either renounce sovereignty completely or retain it. It cannot renounce sovereignty with only the 48 signatories of the SFPT but somehow retain sovereignty if a non-signatory tries to step in and stake a claim.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

As long as there is a possibility that the islands will be occupied by American bases, the islands will not be returned to Japan. How can Russia trust Japan, a country that forgave America Hiroshima and Nagasaki like a puppy??? So forget the islands. Just lift the sanctions, kick out the US bases and trade with Russia. So, who knows, maybe the descendants of today's Russians will believe you. But not now, don't even waste your time

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

Japan was lucky not to be split in half, like East and West Germany. (That would have happened if US had not bombed Hiroshima, ending the war early.)

The Allies were set to give Shikoku to China, Kyushu and Western Japan to the UK, the Northeast to the firmer Soviet Union (not just Hokkaido) and the main island to the US.

It cannot renounce sovereignty with only the 48 signatories of the SFPT but somehow retain sovereignty if a non-signatory tries to step in and stake a claim.

Right, because Japan is a nation that adheres to the international rules based order.

The Japanese often boasts of defeating the Russians in the Russo-Japanese War. The Russians may have lost but it is the Japanese who lost the islands.

Does it matter who the territories belonged to? Florida belonged to Spain. Who has Florida now? Not everyone adheres to the international rules based order. Russia takes. Defend it or lose it. That’s what the American colonists told the British.

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

. Russia did nothing to stop Japan during the War but as soon as they got the chance they went after everything they could get their hands on in both Japan and China. They'd have taken all of Hokkaido if the U.S. didn't get vocal. My Japanese mother in law's father was a Doctor in China during WWII. Yes, Japan was the aggressor and Yes they deserved repercussions after the war. But what happened to many Japanese soldiers in China after WWII was tragic. Russia came in at the very end and carted them off to Siberia to work in concentration camps. This is what happened to her father the Doctor... taken by the Russians and disappeared forever. When the Allies beat the Germans they treated regular German Soldiers much better than the Russians ever did. Russia is an evil country... one that does not work by the moral standards of the West. Yes, much of the West has done some pretty bad crap, but the Russians... they're evil and they are criminals.

What do you know about the Russians besides the doctor's fate? Comparing the incomparable! Not the Americans won that war and not UK allies! To tell you how ordinary Russian people (criminals, as you said) fed German (and Japanese) prisoners of war in Siberian camps? Themselves hungry, but fed the captured enemies. Those who killed their relatives during the war. Do you know what atrocities the Japanese did in Manchzhuria? And yet you do not call them criminals they are only agressors but it's pardonable, yes?). Double standards and hypocrisy is your true face. Russians do it right

-11 ( +0 / -11 )

Neither Russia nor China are communist. They are dictatorships. The only way Japan will ever retrieve the Northern Territories is if Russia democratizes.

Totalitarian dictatorships at that. Russia had democracy with Yeltsin, and look where we are. They're never getting them back.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

What about all the Ainu on Sahkalin that Russia killed?

There is no record at all of Russians mass killing aboriginal people in any part of Russia. That's why today we see images of brigades or divisions of Chechens, Yakuts, Ossesians, Buriyats, Tartars and etc. If Japan went to war they might be able to scrape together a platoon of Ainu.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

Funnily enough the conditions on the islands after the Second World War during the Russian occupation meant that the Japanese remaining there had to work less and found the Russians quite amenable to them.

Politics and enmity between the Japanese and Russian states meant that the Japanese had to leave -many were very unwilling…

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Japan is upset that the USSR seized this Northern Territory at the end of World War II. Things could have been much, much worse. The Soviet leadership demanded that Japan be split in two, with half of it controlled by Moscow, as in Korea. The USA, at the time the only country with a nuclear bomb, told the Soviet leadership NO, and today Japan is a united country.

4 ( +12 / -8 )

Japan is upset that the USSR seized this Northern Territory at the end of World War II. Things could have been much, much worse. The Soviet leadership demanded that Japan be split in two, with half of it controlled by Moscow, as in Korea.

Nice story but not true. USA made territorial claims on Yugoslavia. Specifically, a part of it should go to Italy. In response Stalin said he wanted half of Hokkaido, "from the town and including the town of Rumoi to and including the town of Kushiro" were the exact words he used. Do you think that is half Japan? More like 1/50th.

USA dropped the claim on Yugoslavia and the USSR dropped the claim in Hokkaido.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

There are many borders on an “as is” basis: jp is lucky to be an island, not many issues.

though historically poor, since loosing in warfare, well G7 member.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The good people of Japan need to remember that the Russian Bear will always be at their door.

Please settle your colonial WW2 issues with modern day Korea. If not the divide and conquer method will always be a tool of control. I learn something new every day on this forum. Kindly reference the 1glenn post; a revelation to split Nihon in two in 1945. I see Putin will continue play on his ethno-centric drama in the former iron curtain countries. He would love to push similar Sino latter-day influence regarding these perceived old racial issues among Asian neighbors. Pray for peace but do not stop holding Putin's Russian feet to the fire!

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

The US did all the work in defeating Japan and then the Russians swooped in and tried to claim war prizes.

It's like if the animals in The Little Red Hen seized some of the bread the hen made without doing any of the work.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Japanese rightwingers in dillusion.

Those four islands belong to Russia, all of Japan's neighbors acknowledge them as Russian territory and pay fishing tax to fish there. Heck, even Japan pays "cooperation money" to fish there.

-19 ( +0 / -19 )

Oh for goodness sake. Get over it already. They've gone. They're not Japan's any longer. This PM clearly is trying to bolster support by banging the war drum. Pathetic leadership once again.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

The realpolitik is that as long as the U.S. military is a major presence in Japan Russia cannot risk returning the islands in question. Returned to Japan those islands could become military bases.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

If we're aiming for accuracy, Russia was an oligarchy until they invaded Ukraine, and with their new anti-free speech laws, they are now a fascist oligarchy.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

But Kishi San, if you and Japan keep playing as the lap dog - erand boy of interventionist US and support pathetic useless sanctions against Russia, how you can pretend Russia give you back the islands??..

If every country have the possibility of take more land, no doubt they would, ambition and greed are part of human nature..

Guess who stole half of Mexico's territory about 200 years ago and they still believing it was "God's will".. Lol..

-13 ( +3 / -16 )

It gets tiring hearing Japan whine about the Kurile Islands. They caused a lot of hate and discontent, death and destruction across Asia and the Pacific during WWII. They kind of got what they deserved. Instead of whining more a little humility and admitting all their many barbarities would get them further.

-10 ( +8 / -18 )

Wow, what an anti Russian hate.

If anything justifies hate, it's the invasion of a foreign nation and executing it's innocent civilians in the streets, to satisfy a dictator's ego. It's despicable.

Russia is easy to hate right now. Very easy to hate.

8 ( +14 / -6 )

Japan criticizes Russia's 'illegal occupation' of disputed isles

Japan has been criticizing "Russia's 'illegal occupation' of disputed isles" for many years. This "news" is not going to go anywhere.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites