Abe, Putin Affirm Future-Oriented Isle, Peace Treaty Talks

Politics

Vladivostok, Russia, Sept. 5 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin affirmed Thursday that the two nations will work on negotiations on their decades-old territorial row and the conclusion of a bilateral peace treaty in a future-oriented manner.

But the two leaders made no concrete progress over the issues at the meeting, held in Vladivostok in Russia's Far East on the fringe of an annual Eastern Economic Forum session, hosted by the Russian government, according to sources with access to the meeting.

Abe and Putin instructed Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who were both present at the bilateral summit, to continue work for finding a solution acceptable to both sides. The leaders agreed to hold another meeting, on the occasion of a summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Chile on Nov. 16-17.

On Thursday, Putin talked via a video link with workers of a new fishery processing plant built by a Russian firm on Shikotan, as known in Japan, one of the four northwestern Pacific islands at the center of the territorial dispute.

Abe informed Putin of Japan's position on the move, according to a Japanese official accompanying the prime minister on his ongoing trip to Vladivostok. But the official refrained from disclosing conversations exchanged between Abe and Putin on the row over the islands, collectively known in Japan as the Northern Territories.

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