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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Japan Wants Kuril Treaty

Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa told about 1,500 people at a Northern Territories Day rally in Tokyo that ties had to be improved.

"For that sake, it is necessary to make a full normalization of bilateral ties (with Russia) by concluding a peace treaty after solving both nations' biggest pending issue," he said.

The row over the four north Pacific islands has soured relations since Soviet forces seized them in the last days of World War II.

Japan wants the islands back and has refused to sign a formal peace treaty or offer Russia large-scale economic aid until the issue is resolved.

Northern Territories Day marks the 1855 Russo-Japanese Treaty which set a border between Japan and Russia in the Kuril archipelago between the islands of Euorofu and Urup.

By David Filipov and Pyotr Zhuravlyov


Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev on Monday condemned a weekend mortar attack on a crowded Sarajevo market that killed 68 people, but he