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Tokyo’s protests are not alarming, Kuril Islands are ‘our land’, says Russian PM

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev arrived in Iturup on Friday
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev  Alexander Astafyev/POOL/TASS
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev
© Alexander Astafyev/POOL/TASS

ITURUP, August 2. /TASS/. The Russian government is not alarmed by the protests of the Japanese side in light of Russian officials’ visit of the Kuril Islands, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who arrived in Iturup on Friday, told journalists.

"Of course not," he said, answering the question on whether he is worried about the Japanese side’s protest. "It is our land, it is an entity of the Russian Federation. These islands are part of the Sakhalin Region. Why should we be concerned about it?" Medvedev added.

The prime minister reiterated that Russian government officials visit both the Kuril Islands and any other territories of the Russian Federation without any agreement with any states "with all benevolent attitude and the wish to develop friendly ties." "Moreover, the more indignation is, the more reasons to come here for Russian government representatives, and that’s what we will do, of course," he concluded.

The Japanese government expressed deep disappointment over Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s visit to the Iturup Island, which is part of the Kuril Islands, on Friday.

Moscow earlier consecutively rejected the Japanese side’s protests over Russian officials’ trips to the southern Kuril Islands.