Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin visits the Gidrostroi's food processing plant, connected the disputed Pacific islands claimed by Japan, known by the Russians arsenic the Kuril Islands and the Japanese arsenic the Northern Territories, Monday, July 26, 2021. The Soviet Union took the islands successful the last days of World War II, and the quality has kept the countries from signing a bid pact ending their hostilities. (Dmitry Astakhov, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
MOSCOW – Russia's premier curate connected Monday visited Pacific islands claimed by Japan, a determination that brought a protestation from Tokyo, and said the authorities is considering mounting up a peculiar economical portion there.
Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin is touring Russia's Far East and Siberia this week, and the Kuril Islands were his archetypal halt connected Monday.
Mishustin visited a infirmary and a food works connected Iturup, 1 of the 4 southernmost Kuril islands. He told works workers that the Russian authorities is considering creating a peculiar economical portion connected the islands, successful which concern and investors would beryllium escaped of astir taxes and customs duties.
The measurement Russian officials is presently pondering “could beryllium a bully solution for investors, including the ones successful the West, for Japan also, which, if interested, tin make jobs here,” Mishustin said. He added that “this peculiar authorities volition let the intensification of economical activity" connected the islands.
Mishustin said helium would sermon the task with Russian President Vladimir Putin. On Friday, Putin asked the premier curate to “pay peculiar attention” to the Kuril Islands during his travel to the Far East, noting that Moscow had been moving with “Japanese partners...to make the indispensable conditions for those progressive successful economical activity.”
Japan asserts territorial rights to the islands it calls the Northern Territories. The Soviet Union took them successful the last days of World War II, and the quality has kept the countries from signing a bid pact formally ending their hostilities.
Decades of diplomatic efforts to negociate a colony haven’t produced immoderate disposable results.
Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spent a batch of clip and effort successful the anticipation of negotiating a solution during his astir 8 years successful bureau but scored small progress.
Shortly aft taking bureau past September, recently elected Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga discussed the territorial quality successful a telephone with Putin and said helium hopes to find a colony and motion a bid treaty.
In the aftermath of Mishustin's sojourn to Iturup connected Monday, Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Takeo Mori summoned the Russian ambassador to Japan, Mikhail Galuzin, to protest.
The ambassador said the protestation was “unacceptable successful airy of the cardinal presumption of the Russian side” connected the confederate Kuril Islands, “which passed to our state legally pursuing the results of the World War II,” the Russian embassy successful Japan said successful a connection connected Facebook.
Russia's Foreign Ministry, successful turn, protested the actions of Japanese authorities and urged “partners not to descent down towards a destructive enactment successful bilateral relations.”
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov besides defended Mishustin's sojourn to Iturup, saying that arsenic caput of government, Russia's premier minster “visits those Russian regions that helium considers indispensable and connected the improvement of which, including successful practice with our partners, a batch of enactment is to beryllium done.”
Associated Press writer Haruka Nuga successful Tokyo contributed to this report.
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