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MOSCOW, April 27. /TASS/. Japanese officials and businessmen will be able to visit the South Kuril Islands in summer this year, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday.
"A trip by a group of Japanese officials and business people to the South Kurils will be organized this summer to study specific possibilities of interaction," the head of the Russian state said after talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
Putin also said that "Russia will ensure a direct flight for the delivery of the islands’ former Japanese residents to visit the graves of their ancestors."
"These are humanitarian issues, about the solution of which we numerously spoke with Mr. Prime Minister and he raised these issues and I agree with him that they must be resolved," the Russian leader said.
"We expect that everything will contribute to creating an atmosphere of trust and mutual understanding between our states," the Russian president said.
"Of course, the talk was about the issue of a peace treaty whose solution should meet the strategic interests of both Russia and Japan and should be adopted by the peoples of both countries," Putin said.
As the Russian leader said, "in this context, the sides discussed the issue of joint economic activity on the South Kuril Islands."
The Russian president said that the relevant understanding had been reached during his visit to Tokyo in December 2016.
Putin added that Abe agreed "to continue joint work that has been started and draw up a list of priority projects in the near future."