Russia, Japan will never achieve consensus on Kuril Islands: Medvedev
Medvedev stresses that the amended Russian constitution "directly stipulates that the territories of our country are not subject to alienation."
Russia and Japan will not be able to reach a consensus regarding the Kuril Islands, Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council Dmitry Medvedev wrote in a Telegram post on Tuesday.
"Russia has refused to continue peace treaty talks with Japan. In the context of the Kuril Islands, this is a historically justified step that is long overdue and fair," he said.
Medvedev found that it was "obvious"that Russia and Japan would never reach a consensus regarding the dispute. "Both sides knew it before. The negotiations regarding the Kurils have always had a ritual nature," he said.
He noted that the amended Russian constitution "directly stipulates that the territories of our country are not subject to alienation". "This is a closed issue," he stressed.
Following in the US' footsteps, the Japanese wanted to act like "proud independent samurais" and impose sanctions on Russia, thus indicating with whom they would negotiate the hypothetical text of a peace treaty, Medvedev said. "The talks no longer make sense. And that's fine," the post read.
The politician highlighted the importance to address the developments regarding the Kuril Islands. He mentioned that in recent years, Russia had "breathed new life into" the territories, adding that he visited the islands multiple times, took steps to support them, and has seen real improvements, including schools, roads, and airports. "And, most importantly, the local people see it too. That is how it will be in the future, too!" Medvedev said.
No more talks
Russia’s Foreign Ministry had said earlier that Moscow had terminated the peace treaty talks with Tokyo in light of the unilateral restrictions imposed by Japan against Russia over Ukraine. The decision was to no longer offer Japanese citizens visa-free travel to the islands, which had been permitted following agreements made in 1991 on visa-free travel between Russia’s South Kuril Islands and Japan.
Russia said it was walking away from the dialogue with Japan on joint economic activity on the South Kuril Islands, blocking the prolongation of Japan’s status as a sectoral dialogue partner of the Organization of Black Sea Economic Cooperation.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida deemed Russia’s decision to terminate the talks unacceptable. He said Tokyo was "not able to comment on the prospects of talks" with Moscow.