ST. PETERSBURG, May 26. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised that Moscow will seek compromises with Tokyo in order to sign the peace treaty, he said at a meeting with editors-in-chief of the world’s news agencies on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) on Friday.
"For our part, we will be striving so that compromises acceptable for both sides can be found," Putin said, adding "I cannot say what they [the compromises] might be like because if I could say, we would have already signed a corresponding document [the peace treaty with Japan]."
"In order to boost security, we must do our best to increase trust," he said.
"One of the ways to increase trust is to build cooperation. I have already said speaking about North Korea that the more cooperation, the more chances to develop normal relations and to create the conditions for solving old global problems such as the peace treaty," Putin said.
For the purpose, an agreement was reached with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to implement his plan on broader cooperation between Moscow and Tokyo.
"We will be creating the conditions for joint work on the Kuril Islands and on the whole, we will be enhancing our cooperation," he noted.
Russia and Japan have been in talks to sign a peace treaty since the mid-20th century. The main stumbling block to achieving this is the ownership issue over the Southern Kuril Islands. After the end of World War II, the Kuril Islands were incorporated into the Soviet Union. However, the ownership of Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan Islands and the Habomai Islands is being challenged by Japan. Russia’s Foreign Ministry has stated many times that Russia’s sovereignty over the islands is beyond doubt. In 1956, the Soviet Union and Japan signed a joint declaration on ceasing the state of war, but no peace treaty has been signed so far.