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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Military Envoy Visits

MOSCOW -- Japanese defense chief Hideo Usui held talks Monday with his Russian counterpart Pavel Grachev, the first such military meeting ever between the two countries.

They were expected to discuss the nations' improving relations as well as regional security issues. Reports said Japan also was interested in the possible purchase of Russian military technology.

Russia and Japan never signed a peace treaty after World War II. They continue to contest ownership of four Kuril Islands in the Pacific, which the Soviet Union occupied during the war and Japan still claims. But relations have thawed since the 1991 Soviet collapse