Japan-Russia Relations

September 29, 2020

On September 29, commencing at 7:00 p.m. for approximately 20 minutes, Mr. SUGA Yoshihide, Prime Minister of Japan, held a summit telephone talk with H.E. Mr. Putin, Vladimir Vladimirovich, President of the Russian Federation. The overview of the talk is as follows.

  1. Prime Minister Suga stated that he attaches great importance to Japan-Russia relations and would like to develop the overall relationship between Japan and Russia, including the issue of concluding a peace treaty. He also stressed the need to put an end to the Northern Territories issue without leaving it to the next generation, and expressed his intention to work steadily alongside President Putin.
  2. In response, President Putin offered his congratulations on Prime Minister Suga’s appointment to office. He went on to say that he greatly valued his relationship with former Prime Minister Abe, and stated his readiness to work constructively with Prime Minister Suga on bilateral and international issues. He said that he intended to continue discussing all bilateral issues, including the issue of concluding a peace treaty.
  3. In addition, the two leaders agreed on continuing talks, including on the issue of concluding a peace treaty, and also on developing the overall relationship between Japan and Russia in a wide range of fields, including politics, economy and culture. Prime Minister Suga also stated that he placed importance on humanitarian measures for the former island residents, including grave visits to the four islands by airplane, and said that he wished to further strengthen cooperation over the four islands. President Putin said that he recognizes the importance of “visa-free visits” by the former island residents, and that he is prepared to resume these once the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is contained.
  4. The two leaders also agreed to work together to hold the opening ceremony of the Japan-Russia year of regional exchanges, as it was postponed due to the impact of COVID-19.
  5. To conclude, Prime Minister Suga stated that he was looking forward to meeting and talking with President Putin in person, and President Putin also conveyed his hope to meet as soon as possible.

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