Russia will fully develop and invest in the Kuril Islands, a Russian deputy prime minister was quoted as saying on Monday, in comments that are likely to further strain relations with Japan, which claims the four southernmost islands in the chain.
Japan is claiming the four southern Kuril Islands as its northern territories in a dispute dating back to the end of World War II that has prevented the signing of a peace treaty that formally puts an end to wartime hostilities between Moscow and Tokyo.
Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Trutniev made the remarks during a working visit to Russia’s eastern Khabarovsk region, TASS news agency reported.
Japan has joined its Western allies in imposing economic sanctions on Russia after sending tens of thousands of troops to Ukraine in what Moscow calls a “special military operation.”
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