Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is determined to maintain his predecessor Shinzo Abe’s policy aimed at boosting relations with Russia and advancing peace treaty talks, member of the upper house of Japan’s parliament Muneo Suzuki told reporters following a meeting with Suga.
Suzuki has been engaged in contacts with Moscow since the 1990s and was considered to be Abe’s unofficial adviser on relations with Russia, TASS reports.
"Prime Minister Suga told me that he intended to resolve the peace treaty issue without leaving the task to future generations," the Kyodo news agency quoted Suzuki as saying.
Suga said earlier in an address to parliament that he would seek to achieve success in talks on the southern Kuril Islands and boost relations with Russia, including the singing of a peace treaty.
Peace treaty issue
Since the mid-20th century, Russia and Japan have been holding consultations in order to clinch a peace treaty as a follow-up to World War II. The southern Kuril Islands issue remains the sticking point. In 1945, the whole archipelago was handed over to the Soviet Union. Tokyo laid claims to Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and a group of uninhabited islands referred to as Habomai in Japan. Moscow has stated many times that Russia’s sovereignty over the islands cannot be called into question.