Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced that the government will continue pursuing efforts to strike a peace treaty with Russia even after his resignation, he told a press conference in Tokyo Friday, adding that he regrets not resolving this issue.
"The issue of Japanese citizens’ abduction by North Koreans, the issue of signing a peace treaty with Russia and the issue of amending the constitution are still unresolved, unfortunately. We vowed to address these issues both on the government and the party levels. I expect that these issues will be actively worked on under the new government as well," Abe noted. "I regret that we did not deal with the issue of abducted citizens as well as the peace treaty issue and constitutional amendments. The fact that I step down without finishing this business breaks my heart," he added, TASS reports.
Shinzo Abe has led Japan as the president of the Liberal Democratic Party since December 2012. This month, he beat the previous record to become the longest-serving prime minister in Japan’s history. Elections of a new leader of the party are expected to take place in September. Tradition holds that the prime minister’s office is normally assumed by the ruling party’s leader after a parliamentary vote.