The decision of Russia to deploy in the Kuril Islands division in Tokyo responded with a diplomatic protest. Earlier the sides agreed on joint management in the territories whose status is disputed by the Japanese. After two months it is expected the arrival in Russia of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. As the last steps, that will affect the dialogue with the Japanese about the affiliation of Smoking?
Tokyo sent through diplomatic channels protest to Moscow about its plans to host this year’s division on the Kuril Islands. As said on Thursday the Secretary General of the Japanese government, Yoshihide Suga, similar to the intentions of Russia against the Japanese interests. “It is regrettable if Russia’s Armed forces will strengthen its military presence in the Northern territory. This is contrary to the position of our state,” – said Suga.
“The implementation of long-scheduled plans for strengthening the defense will not reduce the speed of the negotiation mechanism”
However, as noted Suga, Tokyo “stands for continuation of talks on the issue of these Islands and find a mutually acceptable solution”. Japan disputes ownership of the Islands of Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and the Habomai group.
Plans to place in the Kuril Islands division said yesterday the Minister of defence of Russia Sergey Shoigu. He had previously announced the creation of three divisions in the West for 2016, and the formation of infrastructure for the Russian military in the Kuril Islands. Just last year, in the Kuril Islands was the latest defensive coastal missile systems “Bal” (Kunashir) and “Bastion” (Iturup). It is on these two Islands the Japanese claim in the first place.
The head of the Federation Council Committee on defense and security Viktor Ozerov said that the location of the division Russia confirms that it is ready to cooperate with Tokyo in the military field. “Placing on the Kuril Islands its armed forces, we are not going to use them against Japan,” – said Ozerov RIA “Novosti”, noting that Russia continues to station its armed forces on its territory where necessary, and without violating the norms of international law and UN demands.
In turn, the first Deputy Chairman of the Duma Committee on international Affairs Dmitry Novikov said that Russia could use the Kurile Islands for protection.
“We believe that this issue (the Kuril Islands) is solved, and since it’s Russian territory, the Russian land, Russia has the right to take any measures to protect this area and use this area for protection of the Russian Federation as a whole”, – said the Deputy.
Decades of Russian-Japanese relations is complicated by the absence of a peace Treaty that have not concluded after the Second world war. Japan puts its signature in dependence on the decision of a question on Kuriles, insisting on the return of the four Islands of Habomai, Shikotan, Etorofu and Kunashir. The position of Moscow consists that Southern Kuriles became part of the Soviet Union at the end of the Second world war and the Russian sovereignty over them is unquestionable.
The head of the research Center Japan Institute for Far Eastern studies Valery Kistanov expressed confidence that the news about the appearance of the division on the Kuril Islands will not complicate the negotiating process between the two countries. “The course to strengthen the defense of the South Kuril Islands proclaimed a long time and is gradual. Was published the plans that Russia will establish a naval base on the island of Matua in the Central part of the Kuril Islands, which also caused no excitement among the Japanese,” – said Kistanov the newspaper VIEW.
According to the expert, in addition to the military aspects of the Japanese upset and other things, such as the implementation by Russia of the plan of socio-economic development of the Kuril Islands.
“Recently was given the names of five unnamed Islands. All this causes the Japanese have a negative reaction. However, the negotiation process is. We can say that our relations received an impetus after last year’s December meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin and Japanese Prime Minister Abe. We signed a large package of agreements in the economic sphere. At the level of leaders of our countries it was agreed that the need to carry out joint economic activities on the territories which are claimed by Japan. In this respect, both sides are working hard. Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Trutnev as a representative of the President in far East Federal district has developed a plan and put it on the table to the Prime Minister. On the Japanese side, an inter-Ministerial Council for the joint development, as they say, the Northern territories”, – the expert listed.
In addition, this year scheduled several bilateral meetings. In March to negotiate at the level of Deputy foreign Ministers, after a meeting in the 2 + 2 format at the level of Ministers of foreign Affairs and defense. In April, a visit to Russia, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is also going to visit in September, Eastern economic forum in Vladivostok.
“The mechanism of rapprochement between Russia and Japan is running at a fairly high speed. Therefore, the implementation of long-scheduled plans for strengthening the defense will not reduce the speed of the negotiation mechanism”, – predicted Valeriy Kistanov.
In turn, the political analyst Alexei Martynov believes that the emergence of such protest from Tokyo confirms the correctness of Russia’s actions. “We are absolutely free in their actions and it is our sovereign right, which nobody’s business. It is clear that such statements had to follow though, because the question of belonging of the Kuril Islands is one of the ushers of the Japanese issues on the agenda for the past dozen years,” – said Martynov newspaper VIEW.
He recalled that the discourse about the Islands was invented by the hawks of the cold war at its very beginning with the aim of “biting the USSR from the Far East.” “We remember the famous term during the cold war: “Japan is an unsinkable US aircraft carrier”. The cold war, no Soviet Union, no, but osadochek remained – and the question lives on his own, as if he really is! This is the legacy of the cold war firmly entrenched in Japanese political agenda. They have yet to overcome this reality. It is clear that any politician who is going to speak today in Japan sensible things on this occasion, obstructed, and it will be his political death” – the analyst believes.
According to him, the placement division is not against Japan, but against the largest in the Pacific marine air base on Okinawa, which belongs to the United States. “Japanese people should themselves think about how they need such guests in Okinawa”, – summed up Martynov.