Kishida Vows to Proceed with Northern Territories Talks


Tokyo, Feb. 7 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida vowed Monday to proceed with negotiations over four Russian-held islands known in Japan as the Northern Territories, based on past agreements between the two countries.

Kishida was speaking at the National Rally to Demand the Return of the Northern Territories, held by the government and related organizations every year on Feb. 7, designated as Northern Territories Day.

The prime minister said his administration will take over the summit-level talks on the matter since 2018 to advance the negotiations "tenaciously."

At a summit in Singapore in November 2018, then Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin affirmed their commitment to accelerating negotiations to conclude a World War II peace treaty between the two countries, based on the Japan-Soviet Joint Declaration of 1956.

The Abe-Putin accord was seen as representing Japan's shift to seek the return of two of the four islands--Shikotan and the Habomais--instead of all four islands.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press