Japan, Russia Remain Apart over Islands


Moscow, May 10 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, remained apart Friday over the issue of four northwestern Pacific islands at the center of the two countries' territorial row.

At a joint press conference following their meeting in Moscow, Kono indicated that the two sides failed to bridge differences in their positions.

"It's not easy to resolve the issue, which has remained for over 70 years since the end of the war," the Japanese minister said.

Lavrov said that Japan needs to start by fully accepting the results of World War II. Moscow claims that the islands became Russian territory as a result of the war.

The Kono-Lavrov meeting was the third since the Japanese and Russian top diplomats were appointed by their countries' leaders to take charge of negotiations to conclude a long-deferred World War II peace treaty between the two countries.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press