Putin of Russia suggests the signing of a peace treaty with Abe of Japan

Putin of Russia suggests the signing of a peace treaty with Abe of Japan

Sawako Utsumi and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

The Russian Federation hinted strongly to Japan that both nations should sign a peace treaty without any preconditions. This fact emerged after President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation met Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan in the Russian city of Vladivostok. However, it is most unlikely that the appropriate ministries and bureaucrats in Japan will agree to such a radical suggestion by Putin.

Putin suggested strongly to Abe, Let’s sign a peace agreement – not now, but before the end of the year – without any preliminary conditions.”

The leader of the Russian Federation continued, “And then we will continue to address all controversial issues as friends based on the peace treaty… And it seems to me that it would help us solve all the problems that we failed to solve for 70 years.”

In return, Abe stated, “Now that more than 70 years have elapsed after World War II, the issue of a peace treaty between our countries is still unsettled. We with President Putin are sparing no effort to resolve this problem.”

However, the nuance of Abe is more conservative because it is clear that Japan’s stance is to solve the territorial issue first, and then sign a peace treaty. Hence, a person within the Japan Foreign Ministry notified TASS News Agency, “We are determined to continue intense negotiations in accordance with our policy, which is aimed at signing a peace treaty, while resolving the issue of the ownership of four northern islands (that’s what Japan calls Russia’s southern Kuril Islands – TASS). Our stance on that score has remained unchanged.”

Indeed, the Chief Cabinet Secretary of Japan, Yoshihide Suga, poured cold water on any hope of a possible signing by the end of the year. He said, “I don’t want to comment on what President Putin said…However, our position that the Northern Territories issue is resolved before any peace treaty remains unchanged.”

It could be argued that Putin’s offer is more in line with the expectations of the Russian Federation, rather than Japan. In other words, Japan seeks to solve the territorial issue before the signing of any peace agreement. Therefore, any optimism on the part of the Russian Federation should be tampered with by the caution of Japan.



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