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Russia says more trust-building needed for Kuriles deal with Japan

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purpnyellowToday  04:30 pm JST

ok, let's see:

Japan took these islands in 1905 as a consequence of the Treaty of Portsmouth

Wrong. Japanese ownership of the four islands in question was established by treaty in 1855.

"The first Russo-Japanese agreement to deal with the status of Sakhalin and the Kuril Islands was the 1855 Treaty of Shimoda, which first established official relations between Russia and Japan. Article 2 of the Treaty of Shimoda, which provided for an agreement on borders, states "Henceforth the boundary between the two nations shall lie between the islands of Etorofu and Uruppu. The whole of Etorofu shall belong to Japan; and the Kuril Islands, lying to the north of and including Uruppu, shall belong to Russia." The islands of Kunashiri, Shikotan and the Habomai Islands, that all lie to the south of Uturup, are not explicitly mentioned in the treaty and were understood at the time to be a non-disputed part of Japan. The treaty also specified that the island of Sakhalin/Karafuto was not to be partitioned but was to remain under a joint Russo-Japanese condominium.[7]

In the 1875 Treaty of Saint Petersburg Russia and Japan agreed that Japan would give up all rights to Sakhalin in exchange for Russia giving up all rights to the Kuril Islands in favor of Japan. However, a controversy remains as to what constitutes the Kuril islands group, due to translation discrepancies of the French official text of that treat"

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Well, the following seems to contradict a lot of what you’ve laid down quite concisely:

https://www.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:950319/FULLTEXT01.pdf

Looking at the San Francisco Peace Treaty excerpt above, it is obvious there is no

specification as to where the Kurile Islands belong; only that Japan is to renounce sovereignty

over them. Furthermore, Chapter VII, article 25 of the San Francisco Peace Treaty states that

the treaty will on non-allied power states, allied powers being defined in the treaty as its

signatories, “not confer any rights, titles or benefits”.

44 The USSR did not sign the San

Francisco Peace Treaty,

45 making it ineligible to be a recipient of territory from Japan per the

aforementioned Chapter VII, article 25”;

And:

“In the context of pre-World War II Russo-Japanese treaties, the Treaty of Portsmouth of 1905

also requires a mention; the only reason it would not be is that it did not affect the border

demarcation of the Kurile Islands or the territorial dispute discussed in this paper. As

mentioned in section 1.2.1, the Treaty of Portsmouth, named so because it was concluded at

the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Maine, the United States was the treaty that ended the

Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05. In terms of territory it did not affect the Kurile Islands, all of

which at this point were in Japanese possession since the Treaty of Saint Petersburg, but it did

change the status of Sakhalin, the island north of Hokkaido belonging to Russia toda

0 ( +3 / -3 )

ok, let's see:

Japan took these islands in 1905 as a consequence of the Treaty of Portsmouth

In 1951 The Treaty of San Francisco was signed which states that Japan renounces all right, title and claim to the Kurile Islands, and to that portion of Sakhalin and the islands adjacent to it over which Japan acquired in 1905. So basically we went 50 years back.

In a 2005 article in The Japan Times, journalist Gregory Clark writes that official Japanese statements, maps and other documents from 1951, and the statements by the head of the U.S. delegation to the San Francisco conference—John Foster Dulles—make it clear that at the time the San Francisco Treaty was concluded in October 1951, both Japan and the United States considered the islands of Kunashiri and Etorofu to be a part of the Kuril Islands and to be covered by Article (2c) of the Treaty. So Kunashiri and Etorofu should be Russian.

During the 1956 peace talks between Japan and the Soviet Union, the Soviet side proposed to settle the dispute by returning Shikotan and Habomai to Japan.  In the final round of the talks, the Japanese side agreed to settle on the return of Shikotan and the Habomai Islands, in exchange for a peace treaty. However, the U.S. government intervened and blocked the deal by warning that a withdrawal of the Japanese claim on the other islands would mean the U.S. would keep Okinawa.

October 19, 1956, in Moscow, the USSR and Japan signed the Soviet–Japanese Joint Declaration. The Declaration ended the state of war between the Soviet Union and Japan. Article 9 of the Joint Declaration stated: "Hereby, the U.S.S.R., in response to the desires of Japan and taking into consideration the interest of the Japanese state, agrees to hand over to Japan the Habomai and the Shikotan Islands, provided that the actual changing over to Japan of these islands will be carried out after the conclusion of a peace treaty."

As late as 2006, the Russian government of Vladimir Putin offered Japan the return of Shikotan and the Habomais if Japan would renounce its claims to the other two islands, referring to the Soviet-Japanese Joint Declaration of 1956, which promised Shikotan and the Habomais would be ceded to Japan once a peace treaty was signed.

So I don't see any problems with that, Shikotan and the Habomais were offered to Japan several times, but thank to U.S. 1956 talks were ruined. Russia is still ready to give those islands to Japan, but seems like U.S. influence on Japan is really strong

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Officially and legally they are in a state of war only because no peace treaty has been signed. But in reality neither Russia nor Japan have engaged in combat with each other since 1945. There is full diplomatic exchange as well as trade and commerce and immigration just like between any nations that are "not in a state of war". Therefore to use that as an excuse to illegally occupy territory is ridiculous. Have a nice day.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

"Trust" is not an attribute that could be applied to either the former Soviet Union or the present day Russia.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@OssanJapan

But to claim that they are in a state of war

But they are.

Russia and Japan are in a state of war as of September 6th, 2018.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

That Russia and Japan do not yet have a peace treaty is a fact. But to claim that they are in a state of war to justify their illegal action is ridiculous. Which is why none of the WWII allied nations supports Russia's occupation of the Southern Kuriles.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Russia did fix the issue with China

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@OssanJapan

Japan and Russia are still at war.

Warring states can take and hold territory of the other party.

Prior territorial definition of each warring party is irrelevant until the war is officially ended with a peace treaty defining each other's territory.

Therefore, Russian holding of the Kurils is entirely legal, all prior territorial treaties prior to WW2 has been voided.

Russia is willing to negotiate a new peace treaty defining the post-war territory of Russia and Japan.
-2 ( +2 / -4 )

I think they should both agree to give them back to the original inhabitants - the Ainu and related indigenous peoples. Make it a huge reserve for those who originally lived there, and their remaining ancestors. That would settle the problem on both sides. Then, both countries could try to woo the new (and rightful) inhabitants in terms of trade. Too simple, I suppose.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"I wonder if USA had held Okinawa would that be a similar issue?"

Well, allow the Peeping then; no work at the garage at the moment (as per one of your illustrious JT "expert").

The war was fought "supposedly" devoid of any coveting of another's territory leading to territorial expansion.

"They covet no gain for themselves and have no thought of territorial expansion"; this is explicit from the Cairo Declaration addressed to Japan's leaders.

Since Okinawa was legally a Japanese Prefecture since 1879, after Japan's "de facto" occupation since 1609, Okinawa was not regarded as territories that Japan has to cede.

Okinawa was already firmly under Japan's claws well before the 1914 date specified in that declaration!

Okinawa was an integral part of Japan's territory, not up for grabs and certainly not for the US of A to keep in perpetuity. Okinawa was placed under Allied administration (carried out solely by the US), but Okinawa had to be returned to Japan at some point into the future.

To conclude: Nah, the US could have not have, legally speaking, strip Okinawa from Japan.

"From the Cairo Declaration:

"The several military missions have agreed upon future military operations against Japan. The Three Great Allies expressed their resolve to bring unrelenting pressure against their brutal enemies by sea, land, and air. This pressure is already rising.

"The Three Great Allies are fighting this war to restrain and punish the aggression of Japan. They covet no gain for themselves and have no thought of territorial expansion. It is their purpose that Japan shall be stripped of all the islands in the Pacific which she has seized or occupied since the beginning of the first World War in 1914, and that all the territories Japan has stolen from the Chinese, such as Manchuria, Formosa, and The Pescadores, shall be restored to the Republic of China. Japan will also be expelled from all other territories which she has taken by violence and greed. The aforesaid three great powers, mindful of the enslavement of the people of Korea, are determined that in due course Korea shall become free and independent."

The Kuriles are presently kept illegally, notwithstanding the state of war between the USSR and Japan.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Who trust Russia?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I wonder if USA had held Okinawa would that be a similar issue? I don’t know. But I do think these are Japanese properties.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Translation: give us more money, why do we need to give you ruskis more money and investments?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Pipe line of gas and petrol from Russia/Siberia and advanced infrastructure from Japan and development of Northern Islands Nippo-Russian free a free zone for trade will be the best deal!

Yes , it would be indeed, however US will never allow Japan to have a pipeline direct from Russia. Period.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

"Russia" and "Trust" do not mix, just like oil and water.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Russia could help create that "trust" they talk about by offering assistance to Hokkaido in some form as appropriate.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Russian trust sounds like an oxymoron.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Do they really think they'll get all the 4 islands?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"We proceed from the position that, as you know, the Kurile islands were transferred to the Soviet Union and Russia at the end of World War Two on a lawful basis in line with international agreements."

This is where Russia wrong on a fundamental level. The USSR had every right take lands that Japan had taken from Russia, pursuant to an agreement among the WWII allied victors. But t islands were never Russian. They were Japanese in accordance with a Treaty between Russia and Japan signed in 1855. This is why the US, UK and the European Parliament to this day consider these four islands to be Japanese territory under Russian administration(ie occupation). These four islands are nothing more than the immediate post-WWII Soviet land grab they carried out everywhere.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Theoretical to understand:

So if the US had taken Kuril, but the US had been dissolved in 1991 and 50 sovereign states took over respective territory, who would own the kuriles? The US had been dissolved, so which state would take it, or would it go back to Japan, or would it be declared independent? The soviet union is not just Russia.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Once you stop calling Karafuto( Sakhalin ) northern territories in English translation there may be some progress.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Pure lip service by Russia about the isles.They'll never return them.Never say never? Well I'm saying they'll never.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Pipe line of gas and petrol from Russia/Siberia and advanced infrastructure from Japan and development of Northern Islands Nippo-Russian free a free zone for trade will be the best deal!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

would you trust abe? two corruption charges we know of, giving "aid" to dodgy countries...

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Japan, already an extremely distrustful country dealing with Russia... good luck to both of them

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

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