Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Russian Ex-President Medvedev Slams Japan Over Kuril Islands Claim

Dmitry Medvedev. Yekaterina Shtukina / POOL / TASS

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Tuesday slammed Japan's prime minister after he said his government remains committed to signing a peace treaty with Moscow to resolve the territorial dispute over an island chain claimed by Tokyo.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said in a policy speech to parliament earlier Tuesday that Tokyo “remains fully committed” to negotiations over what Japan refers to as the Northern Territories and signing an agreement formally ending World War II.

Kishida also said that his government's support of Ukraine and sanctions against Russia “would not waver.”

“We don’t give a damn about the ‘feelings of the Japanese’ concerning the so-called ‘Northern territories’,” Medvedev wrote X (formerly Twitter), referring to the Far East Kuril Islands. 

“They’re not ‘disputed territories,’ but Russia,” he said.

Medvedev, whose rhetoric has become increasingly vitriolic since Russia's invasion of Ukraine, vowed to continue deploying weapons on the Kuril Islands and “grow their strategic role.”

Russia has controlled the island chain, which lies north of Japan’s island of Hokkaido, since seizing it in the final days of World War II in 1945. 

The territorial dispute and Russia’s growing militarization of the island chain have kept Moscow and Tokyo from signing a peace accord that would formally mark an end to the war. 

In his social media post, Medvedev said that Japanese officials seeking Russia’s territorial concessions should commit suicide.

“Those of the samurai who feel especially sad can end their life in a traditional Japanese way, by committing seppuku. If they dare, of course,” he wrote.

“Surely, it feels a lot better French-kissing Americans, having totally forgotten Hiroshima and Nagasaki.”

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more