Japan-Russia Foreign Ministers’ Meeting
May 31, 2019
On May 31, Mr. Taro Kono, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, held his 4th Japan-Russia Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in 2019, and the 11th such meeting, with Mr. Lavrov, Sergey Viktorovich, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, in Tokyo. (approximately 3 hours, including the working lunch and a one-on-one meeting for approximately 40 minutes).
1. Issue of Concluding a Peace Treaty
- In preparation for the Japan-Russia Summit Meeting in June, the two ministers carried out discussions on a peace treaty, following the agreement between the two leaders in Singapore in November 2018.
- On a peace treaty The two ministers engaged in a highly candid discussions, based on the relationship of trust that they have cultivated through the negotiations. Following on from the previou Foreign Ministers’Meetings, Foreign Minister Kono clearly conveyed Japan’s positions regarding matters where Japan’s and Russia’s positions differ.
- In regard to the joint economic activities on the Four Islands, based on the results of the director-general level working group on the movement of people, and the director-level working group regarding legal aspects, both of which had been held the previous week, the ministers confirmed the status of progress towards the early implementation of the projects and discussed ways to proceed from now on. The ministers also confirmed to hold a director-general level working group on details of the projects on June 11, and with the upcoming June Japan-Russia Summit Meeting in mind, they confirmed that both sides will continue to show flexibility and conduct constructive work toward early implementation of the projects in a manner that does not harm the legal positions of either side.
- The ministers confirmed the importance of continuing to steadily advance initiatives, regarding humanitarian measures for former island residents, including the grave visit by airplane that will be implemented during the summer this year.
2. Bilateral Relations
- With the upcoming Japan-Russia Summit Meeting in June in mind, the ministers discussed wide-ranging bilateral relations, such as economic matters, including the realization of the Eight-point Cooperation Plan, and people-to-people exchanges.