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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Putin Kuril Islands will not sell, but the Japanese will raise the price

“We’re not selling anything. We are ready to buy a lot, but do not sell anything” – these words at the summit Russia-ASEAN Vladimir Putin commented on the talks that Moscow is allegedly seeking “a higher price to sell the Kuril Islands of Japan. Thus, according to the President, Russia is ready to negotiate with all partners, including the Country of the rising Sun – including, and for the conclusion of a peace Treaty (unless this is prevented by the fact that Japan considers four Kuril Islands as its territory and is disputing them at our country). About why to expect a compromise between Tokyo and Moscow in the short term is not worth it, and why the disputed Islands so important to the Japanese, “MK” told the head of the Center of researches of Japan of Institute of Far East of RAS, doctor of historical Sciences, candidate of economic Sciences Valery KISTANOV.

photo: kremlin.ru

– Theoretically, the agreement between Moscow and Tokyo may be concluded, if we can find a compromise, which is often said Putin. He even used the appropriate term from judo – hikiwake (about what the Russian leader in 2012 used this concept – meaning a situation where neither of the parties has failed to achieve victory, – when discussing the Kuril Islands, told in Moscow Yoshiro Mori, the representative of the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe – “MK”). But he never explained that invests in this concept in this case, – the expert reminded. – In the meantime, the positions of Russia and Japan disagree, and quite strongly. The Japanese believe that our country needs in one form or another for her to regain the four Islands; in Sochi, where in may this year, met Putin and Abe, the Japanese Prime Minister spoke about a “new approach”, but also can not decipher what it is. So while the prospects of addressing this issue is not seen as Moscow’s stance, insisting on the recognition by Japan of the legitimacy of the fact of possession by Russia of the Islands remains unchanged.

– Is there a possibility for a while just to remove the problem of the Kuril Islands from the agenda? It is no secret that for many years — the main stumbling block in Russian-Japanese relations

– In principle, perhaps it would be ideal if the parties agreed to defer resolution of this issue for some period, and to freely develop relations in other fields. This approach is not new — at the time, Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping suggested leaving aside the issue of Diaoyu Islands in the East China sea, claimed by Japan (where they are known as the Senkaku Islands). And like in Tokyo, then agreed to it; however, now dispute is ongoing and Beijing denied that the proposals of Deng Xiaoping took place.

Such an approach would be rational, but, even if Russia will go for it, the Japanese to such a move would not agree. The problem for already Smoke them in the blood, for decades they taught that Islands captured illegally. And if we take the current Prime Minister Abe, the decision of this question is the number one goal, more important tasks had not. It’s a family thing: his father, in the era of “perestroika” in the USSR, former Minister of foreign Affairs of Japan, much has been done in this direction. He had made his visit to the country, although he, for some reason, still not brought to the Japanese Islands. And therefore the current Prime Minister wants to complete the matter prior to the end of his second Prime Minister’s term, which expires in 2018: more it to stand for the post will not. In addition, the Japanese clearly understand that to solve this problem you need to work directly with the head of state, so they relied on Gorbachev and Yeltsin, to Medvedev, who promised them a compromise. And therefore, while in power, Abe, “postpone” the problem of the Kuril Islands will not succeed.

– And after it expires the second term, Abe – when the new Prime, is such a scenario possible?

– I don’t think. To make concessions to Russia in this question for any politician in Japan would mean political death.

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