The Yomiuri newspaper said on January 8th that while negotiating a peace treaty with Moscow, Japan may suggest renouncing the mutual right to demand any kind of compensation related to the southern Kuril Islands.
According to the paper’s sources, the relevant document may be signed simultaneously with the peace treaty between the two states. However, according to Yomiuri’s sources in the Japanese government, such claims may put additional strain on the already tense negotiations to sign a peace treaty. As a result, the Japanese government now tends to believe that it would be better to allocate compensations to the affected former residents from the country’s budget rather than demand them from Moscow.
The Kuril Islands are currently under Russian jurisdiction but the two southernmost large islands, Iturup and Kunashir, are claimed by Japan, which refers to them as the ‘Northern Territories’.
As reported by the Russian news agency TASS, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to pay a visit to Russia in late January. In the run-up to his visit, Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono will arrive in Moscow on January 14th.