Japan says it intends to develop relations with neighbouring countries

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said the countries in question include Russia and China

Japan says it intends to develop relations with neighbouring countries
The Japanese government expects to build stable relations with neighbouring countries, including Russia and China. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga told a news conference in Tokyo on Monday.

“We intend to continue building stable relations with neighbouring states, including Russia and China”, –  he said. Meanwhile, Suga also pointed to the importance of the alliance with the US to his government.

Moscow and Tokyo have been negotiating intermittently since the middle of the last century to work out a peace agreement following World War II. The main obstacle has been the issue of ownership of the southern part of the Kuril Ridge. In 1945 the entire archipelago was incorporated into the Soviet Union, but Japan disputes ownership of Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and a group of currently uninhabited islands, which Japan calls Habomai. The Russian Foreign Ministry has repeatedly stressed that Russian sovereignty over them, which has the appropriate international legal framework, is not in question.

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