Overseas Network, January 23, according to Kyodo News Agency, 22 p.m. local time, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held talks with Russian President Putin at the Kremlin in Moscow. The two sides had talks for more than three hours in total, but apart from the mutual meetings between the heads of state and their counterparts, the one-to-one talks between the heads of state of Japan and Russia, which depended solely on translation, lasted only 50 minutes.
Abe and Putin attended a joint press conference after the talks. Speaking about the issue of peace treaties, including disputed islands, Abe said: We have opened our minds and talked about this issue slowly. Although the solution is not easy, it has to be dealt with.
Putin also said that it took too long for the two sides to come up with a solution that the people of both countries can understand and accept. Putin pointed out in particular that the talks are of constructive significance and made it clear that the goal is to sign a peace treaty. On the territorial issue, Putin stressed that a solution is possible.
Abe and Putin attend a joint press conference (Daily News)
The two sides affirmed that they will promote the joint economic development of the South Thousand Islands (Japans four northern islands) and enhance cultural exchanges between the two countries. In February 2019, the foreign ministers of Japan and Russia will hold talks to further promote peace treaty negotiations.
The two sides have exchanged views fairly frankly on the signing of the peace treaty, Abe said after the summit between Japan and Russia. Abe then left Moscow on a government plane for Switzerland.
South Kuril Islands (Japan TBS TV)
According to Japanese media, this is the first summit meeting between Japan and Russia this year, and the 25th meeting between Abe and Putin. Several Japanese government sources revealed that Abe considered signing a peace treaty with Russia if he could negotiate with Russia and hand over only two of the four islands of Japan, Sedan and Tooth Dance. Abe judged that if he continued to fight for the four islands, the negotiations would be deadlocked, and the transfer of Sedan and Tooth Dance Islands, as stipulated in the 1956 Japan-Soviet Joint Declaration, might be far off.
Source: Author of Overseas Network: Wang Shanning, Editor-in-Charge: He Yufang_NN5632