Russian and Japanese officials are to meet next Wednesday to discuss creating the countries' first peace treaty since the end of World War Two, the TASS news agency reported Friday.
The two nations have never reached a peace agreement due to an ongoing disagreement over ownership of the Kuril Islands. The islands have been under Russian jurisdiction since the end of the war.
Japan’s Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said that he hoped the discussion would be “positive and deep.” “We hope for a peace deal that will be based on the results of previous negotiations of the leaders of Japan and Russia,” he said said, TASS reported.
Russian President Vladimir Putin held talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Sochi last month, where both men pledged to taking a “new approach” to resolving the Kuril Islands conflict.
Some media outlets reported after the meeting that Russia could be ready to cede the islands to Japan, the Meduza website reported. Putin denied the rumors, saying that Russia “does not sell anything.”