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MOSCOW, April 27. /TASS/. The Kremlin expects that the political will of Moscow and Tokyo will help them reach a peace treaty, Russian Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Pskov told reporters.
"The peace treaty issue is connected with territorial matters that need to be tackled. The parties believe that solutions acceptable for both Moscow and Tokyo should be found," he said. According to Peskov, "this will pave the way for signing a peace treaty."
The Kremlin spokesman went on to say that "both Moscow and Tokyo have been showing solid political will and determination to find a way that will lead them to signing a peace treaty. "We expect this political to help us sign this important document sooner or later," Peskov added.
"At the same time, it is clear for both Moscow and Tokyo that there is no need to wait until this document is signed. Meanwhile, painstaking work is underway to develop and improve bilateral relations in various fields," the Russian presidential spokesman said.
Russia and Japan have been holding consultations since the mid-20th century in order to clinch a peace treaty as a follow-up to World War II. The Kuril Islands issue remains the sticking point since after WWII the islands were handed over to the Soviet Union while Japan has laid claims to the four southern islands.
In 1956, the two countries signed a common declaration on ending the state of war and restoring diplomatic and all other relations, but the islands issue was not solved. At the same time, the Soviet Union expressed readiness to hand the Shikotan and Habomai islands over to Japan as a gesture of goodwill but the plan was never implemented.