Tokyo would like the peace treaty negotiations with Russia to be concluded as soon as possible, said Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono in a press conference in Sapporo, Hokkaido, after returning from a visit to Moscow.
The foreign minister stressed the importance of finding an arrangement that satisfies both parties.
“We would like to conclude these negotiations as quickly as possible, taking into account the old age of the former inhabitants of the four northern islands. We must conclude the negotiations after considering various combinations that would satisfy both parties, because without this, we will not be able to have the peace treaty ratified by the parliaments of both countries,” TASS cites Kono as saying.
Directly after his recent meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Kono admitted that Moscow and Tokyo have so far been unable to overcome their disagreements concerning the terms of a peace treaty.
Moscow has not concealed its pessimism either. Lavrov commented after the most recent meeting that there are “significant differences” in the two countries’ stances on a peace treaty.
The Japanese Foreign Minister even admitted that “strong words” were used during his meeting with Lavrov.