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Japanese oppositionist says peace treaty with Russia possible under Putin

May 23, 8:40 UTC+3 TOKYO
Leader of Japan's main oppositionist Democratic Party (Minshinto) Katsuya Okada pointed out that he considers Vladimir Putin a strong leader
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Katsuya Okada

Katsuya Okada

© EPA/FRANCK ROBICHON

TOKYO, May 23. /TASS/. Leader of Japan's main oppositionist Democratic Party (Minshinto) Katsuya Okada said at a news conference in response to a TASS question that he shares the position of Prime Minsiter Shinzo Abe on the problem of the peace treaty with Russia.

"I agree with the position of Premier Abe, who intends to solve the problem [of concluding a peace treaty] during the tenure of Russian President [Vladimir] Putin," Okada said. "He is a very strong leader."

At the same time, Okada's party "is of the opinion that the peace treaty may only be concluded after the resolution of the territorial issue", he said.

The problem of the southern Kuril Islands is the key obstacle to a complete normalization of the Russian-Japanese ties and the signing of a peace treaty. After the Second World War, all Kuril Islands were made part of the Soviet Union. But Japan does not agree that the islands of Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and the Habomai island group belong to Russia. Tokyo calls the islands "Northern Territories".

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