Japanese opposition believes that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is ready to settle for too little.
In Japan, politicians, experts and media come to an almost unanimous conclusion: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is ready in no time to sign a peace Treaty with Moscow, having received from it, only 7% of the territory of the South Kuril Islands. Such a conclusion was made primarily on the basis of statements of Premier at the ongoing Parliament debate. With details — the correspondent of TASS in Japan Vasily Golovnin, specially for “Kommersant”.
“I had the overall impression that he (Prime Minister Abe.— “B”) is ready to shake hands with Russia, received only Shikotan and Habomai,” said one of the leaders of the Japanese parliamentary opposition Katsuya Okada, commenting in an interview with reporters Tuesday, during a meeting of the budget Committee of the lower house of Parliament. During the discussion, he deftly herded into a corner of the Prime Minister uncomfortable questions on the issue of the South Kuril Islands.
Need to clarify: officially Tokyo considers its “Northern territories” on the southern Kuril Islands of Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and the adjacent ridge of small and now uninhabited Islands that the Japanese call the Habomai and the negotiations for convenience, think of the one island. However, this position , when Prime Minister Abe quickly began to blur.
The first thing the members of his government have ceased to call the Islands “illegally occupied territories”, although this phrase is still present in many official documents. Then he disappeared and the term “native land of Japan” — officially Tokyo explains this reticence a reluctance to provoke the wrath of Moscow in ongoing negotiations on a peace Treaty.
The current debate in Parliament representatives of the government ceased to use the expression “four Northern Islands”.
Instead, it refers to a more vague “Northern territories” and in November last year at a meeting in Singapore, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe agreed to intensify negotiations on a peace Treaty based on Soviet-Japanese Joint Declaration of 1956. It specifically says that the Soviet Union after the signing of the peace Treaty will give the neighbor Shikotan and Habomai as a sign of goodwill.
In Japan, for decades it was believed that Tokyo, receiving these Islands, will continue negotiations on the Iturup and Kunashir. However, as is now believed, such a task is practically removed from the agenda. During this debate the opposition leader Okada many times asked Prime Minister Abe about whether he would sign a peace Treaty and receive only Shikotan and Habomai. And each time received the same answer: “I’d like to shy away from clear statements on this, not to go into details of the ongoing negotiations”.
The opposition thus constantly reminded that Shikotan and Habomai account for only 7% of the area of the “Northern territories”. Prime this fact does not argue, but persistently makes it clear that it is not enough. During the debate, for example, Shinzo Abe’s extensively explained that before the war on all “four Islands” there were about 17 thousand Japanese. However, 6 thousand of them were located exactly at the Shikotan and Habomai, where he worked, according to him, the income, a trade collecting edible seaweed.
Shinzo Abe has repeatedly emphasized that at the conclusion of a peace Treaty will be clear and permanently fixed the boundary line.
“In the words of the Prime Minister reveals willingness to once and for all solve the issue, receiving only two Islands,” — says Japanese news Agency Kyodo.
By the way, during the discussion in Parliament the fate of the South Kuril Islands, the foreign Minister Taro Kono asked what legally constitutes a peace Treaty. The Minister in response has issued a certificate in the theory, he said, such document shall terminate the state of war between the two countries and decides the issue of war compensation and the territorial problem. After that, the Minister returned to his seat, the more this theme in Parliament did not rise, although the Russian Minister’s words have been misunderstood, which was almost a scandal: in Tokyo, they say, is going to demand reparations.
However, two of the Minister the three main themes of the peace Treaty has already been resolved in the Joint Declaration of 1956. It speaks of ending the state of war between the USSR and Japan, there is well-documented refusal of mutual claims. The only outstanding question of the boundary line, and hopes as soon as possible to draw Prime Minister Abe.
Japan does not require any compensation — and cannot do so on the basis of the General context of negotiations, where she acts as a supplicant and the initiator of the agreement.
Not so long ago, for example, one of the most influential Japanese Newspapers reported that in a hypothetical transfer of the Islands of Tokyo going from your budget to compensate their former Japanese residents of the damages from lost property and economic rights. But while Prime Minister Abe should keep quiet about this, although the Parliament has admitted that recording his interpreter during interviews with Vladimir Putin in one-on-one carefully collected and stored. These securities receive the status of public documents, said Mr. Abe, go for long-term storage under a signature stamp “confidentially”.
However, the content of the secretly ongoing debate might get a little clearer on 16 February, when the foreign Ministers of Russia and Japan will meet in Munich, where it will arrive at the International conference on security issues.
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“From ugnali Kuril Islands, Russia-owned, is the island of Urup, which we could be limited… to the Japanese side of the border was considered the Northern tip of Iturup”
(From the note of the adjutant-General Euphemia Putyatin , on behalf of Russia signed with Japan Treaty of Shimoda, the first Treaty of territorial delimitation between Moscow and Tokyo, 1853).
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“Their aggression against our country Japan began in 1904… Japan Today… signed the act of unconditional surrender. This means that southern Sakhalin and the Kuril Islands will go to the Soviet Union and henceforth will serve as… to the base of the Japanese attack in the far East, as a means of direct communication of the Soviet Union with the ocean and a base for the defense of our country against Japanese aggression”
(From the appeal of Joseph Stalin to the Soviet people in connection with the surrender of Japan, 3 September 1945).
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“The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, to meet the wishes of Japan and taking into account the interests of the Japanese state, agrees to transfer to Japan the Habomai Islands and the island of Shikotan, so however, that the actual transfer of these Islands will be made after the conclusion of a peace Treaty”
(9th article of the Soviet-Japanese Declaration, 19 October 1956).
In the photo: Chairman of the Council of Ministers Nikolai Bulganin, who had signed the Declaration of the Soviet Union
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“The Soviet government deems it necessary to state that only provided the withdrawal of all foreign troops from the territory of Japan and the signing of the peace Treaty between the USSR and Japan of Islands Habomai and Shikotan would be transferred to Japan, as envisaged by the joint Declaration of the USSR and Japan from October 19, 1956”
(From the aide-Memoire of the Soviet government of January 27, 1960).
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“To say that between our countries there are some “unresolved territorial issue” is one-sided and wrong interpretation”
(The answers of General Secretary of the CPSU Leonid Brezhnev to the questions of the newspaper “Asahi”, April 1977).
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“As for the so-called territorial issue, the Soviet side considers this issue resolved at the appropriate historical and international framework. The Soviet Union the territory is large, but the extra land we have,”
(From the statement of the Minister of foreign Affairs of the USSR Eduard Shevardnadze, 7 may 1988).
“We have long pretended that the problem does not exist. But it will not go away. And it became increasingly clear as soon as we become objectively to understand it”
(From the speech of the President of the USSR Mikhail Gorbachev at the session of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR, April 1991).
“One of the problems which we have to tackle in the near future is the achievement of a final post-war settlement of relations with Japan… it is Known that the main obstacle to this Treaty, the issue of border demarcation between Russia and Japan… In your approach to it will be guided by the principles of justice and humanity”
(From a letter to Russian President Boris Yeltsin to the citizens of Russia, November 1991).
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“In my opinion, the question of territorial belonging of the South Kuril Islands is not worth it. We are a foreign land is not necessary, but its not give never. We are on the subject anyone don’t talk. Did not give and will not give up!”
(Statement by Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin during a visit to the South Kuril Islands, August 1993).
“The parties undertake to make every effort to sign a peace Treaty by the year 2000”
(From the Krasnoyarsk Declaration, signed by Boris Yeltsin and Ryutaro Hashimoto in November 1997).
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“It does not say that Russia and Japan commit themselves to signing such a Treaty. It says here that they will make every effort to sign this contract”
(From the answers of Russian President Vladimir Putin and Japanese reporters, September 2000).
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“We generally would like to put an end to this problem. We have no extra Islands and the unnecessary areas. In General, we should not make territorial precedents”
(From the statement of the speaker of the state Duma Gennady Seleznev at the International forum on combating terrorism, March 27, 2002).
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“This is our land, the root! Not an inch will not give up, absolutely. From what it suddenly? The one who gave at least a small patch of their land, as a rule, provoked the storm. It all ends with the collapse of the state. This is a very dangerous thing”
(From the statement of the President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev to journalists during a visit to Kunashir island, July 4, 2012).
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“We believe that we have no territorial problems. This is Japan thinks that it has territorial problems with Russia. We are willing on this account to talk”
(From the statement of the President of Russia Vladimir Putin to journalists during a press conference after a meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, December 18, 2016).
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“So here’s the idea I came up with: let’s make a peace Treaty — not now, but before the end of the year, without preconditions… And then on the basis of this peace Treaty as friends will continue to resolve all disputed issues. Of course, it seems to me that this would make us the solution to all problems with which we cannot cope for 70 years”
(From the statement of Vladimir Putin at the Eastern economic forum 12 September 2018).
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“These days we have seen a very large number of different arguments, of political speculation that, say, some separate deal to transfer Islands and so on. This is not so. The adoption of the 1956 Declaration does not mean automatic transfer of two Islands to Japan”
(Statements made by Dmitry Peskov, press Secretary of the President of the Russian channel “Russia-1” after the meeting of Vladimir Putin and Shinzo Abe in Singapore on 18 November 2018).