politics

Russia's top prosecutor visits Japan-claimed islands

8 Comments

Russia's top prosecutor paid a visit Friday to parts of the Moscow-held, Tokyo-claimed islands off Japan's northernmost main island of Hokkaido, islanders told Kyodo News.

Prosecutor General Igor Krasnov became the first senior Russian government official to visit the disputed islands, called the Northern Territories in Japan and the Southern Kurils in Russia, since Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga took office last month.

The rare visit by Moscow's top investigative official to Kunashiri and Shikotan islands was slammed by Tokyo, with Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato saying it was "unacceptable" and a protest had been lodged.

In August, Russian emergencies minister Yevgeny Zinichev also traveled to Kunashiri Island.

Krasnov held talks with local prosecutors and residents on the two islands, while arrangements are being made for a visit to Etorofu Island, according to sources close to the matter.

As part of his trip to the country's Far East, Krasnov on Thursday visited Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, the capital of the Sakhalin region, which has jurisdiction over the island group, becoming the first top prosecutor to do so in 20 years.

He offered flowers at a monument dedicated to soldiers of the former Soviet Union who died in operations on the Kuril Islands, which were under Japan's control until the final stages of World War II in August 1945, and elsewhere.

The decades-long dispute over the island chain that also includes the Habomai islet group has prevented the two countries from signing a postwar peace treaty.

The four islands were seized by the Soviet Union following Japan's surrender in 1945. Tokyo argues the annexation was illegal and demands their return, while Moscow says it was a legitimate outcome of the war.

Also on Friday, Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov agreed over the telephone to promote talks toward signing the treaty and to push joint economic activities on the disputed isles as a way to build mutual trust, according to the Japanese Foreign Ministry.

The two, in their first phone talks since Suga took office in mid-September, did not discuss Krasnov's visit to the isles, an official at the ministry said.

Suga has expressed his readiness to promote negotiations on the territorial dispute, which his predecessors including Shinzo Abe failed to put an end to, based on a 1956 joint declaration between Japan and the Soviet Union.

In 2018, Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed to advance negotiations based on the declaration stipulating that Moscow will hand over the two smaller islands -- Shikotan and Habomai -- to Tokyo after a peace treaty is concluded.

© KYODO

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

8 Comments
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Japan made the mistake of first attacking Russia back in 1904.

Russia seized the islands as payback.

There is no dispute.

Japan lost the islands due to aggression and caused the death of thousands of Russians.

Japan is entitled to zero...

0 ( +12 / -12 )

Russia. Close to the same population as Japan with 1000x the land mass, territory, land.

Russia, the eternal land, an Ocean on land size country.

Russia, Claiming Half of All The Antarctic, already has dozens of bases with soldiers station there.

2020 Russia, Claiming the entire Planet Of Venus.

Russia in 2050 Will claim all of the Universe and Everything that Exist in it.

Look at a map of the world... This country looks like a cancer, overgrown, oversized, too much of the Pie called Earth Going to small percentage of Russians.

-1 ( +11 / -12 )

Kurisu

If Japan did nothing in 1904 Russia would have conquered all of Manchuria as they did. Had to give it back.

Korean Peninsula was next on the menu. Koreans speaking Russians and staying poor. That was the alternative future for you Koreans if Japan did nothing.

China was on the Menu as Well, before Japan attacked aggressive Russia, the Russians wanted Port Arthur, took land called Vladivostok today!

You Russians should be stopped! Japan standing up to Russia was a good thing!

-2 ( +10 / -12 )

Shinzo Abe made a dumb mistake of accepting only 2 islands out of 4 because he thought that was the best way. In the end, he didn't get anything at all. The consequence of his action will be Russia using Abe's idiocy to pressure Japan not accepting any island concession - If Japan wants 4 islands or more back, Russia will use Abe's example to backtrack Japanese demands.

If Japan did nothing in 1904 Russia would have conquered all of Manchuria as they did. Had to give it back.

Soviet Union conquered Manchuria for a brief time from Japan in 1940s. People over there enjoyed their lives better than under Japanese rule for a moment, of course.

Korean Peninsula was next on the menu. Koreans speaking Russians and staying poor. That was the alternative future for you Koreans if Japan did nothing.

Koreans will likely disagree with your statement. South Korea was developed under the American guidance, not Japanese help alone.

You Russians should be stopped! Japan standing up to Russia was a good thing!

Depend if you have the strength to do it. Even the USA can't do anything, when Russians openly instigate aggression near Alaska or conquered Crimea of Ukraine. If Japan stupidly attack Russians in Sakhalin Island tomorrow, the Russians would be gladly acquiring Hokkaido for their expansion pack. The USA will unlikely interfere at all.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

kurisupisuToday  07:19 am JST

Japan made the mistake of first attacking Russia back in 1904.

With the full support and backing of the US and UK.

Russia seized the islands as payback.

Taken after Japan declared surrender and seized In violation of the WWII Allied declarations that only islands taken by Japan through war or greed would be taken away. These islands became Japanese through a negotiated Treaty with Russia in 1855. They were never taken by war.

There is no dispute.

For the above reason, the US, UK and European Parliament consider them to be Japanese territory illegally occupied by Russia. Bet your bum there's a dispute.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Why is Japan having all these problems,???. Same problem with China and now Russia ???. PLEASE have the decency to give back, what is not Japan's w

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Obscene and disgusting behavior by the Russian government. These 4 islands are inalienable Japanese territory. Simple as that. The democracies of the world almost universally recognize the islands as Japan's. Time for the Russians to either a) vacate the islands, or b) allow joint development with Japan (ex big eco-resorts, hotels and fisheries) for 10 years, after which they revert to Japanese ownership.

Putin, the murderous, corrupt, evil despot, is simply doing this to antagonize PM Suga.

Sick and tired of FOUR of Japan's neighbors constantly bullying and picking on Japan.

 If Japan stupidly attack Russians in Sakhalin Island tomorrow, the Russians would be gladly acquiring Hokkaido for their expansion pack. The USA will unlikely interfere at all.

The US has Japan's back, FACT, and Russia and Russian people would cease to exist overnight, with the firepower the US would rain down on Russia.

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

The Amur Tiger in the leash of The Bear non-chalantly watches the cat in the flowers playing.

If Japan truly believes it owns those Islands..and I mean the Southern Kurils...then I dare it to even do the "tricks" it does in Dokdo or Diao yu. I can't wait for them to display their " Nihonjinron " or " Yamatodamashi " there. I'm waiting.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

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