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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 February 1 - 7  > Abe’s ‘new approach’ is useless in solving territorial dispute with Russia: JCP Hatayama
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2017 February 1 - 7 [POLITICS]

Abe’s ‘new approach’ is useless in solving territorial dispute with Russia: JCP Hatayama

February 4, 2017
Japanese Communist Party lawmaker Hatayama Kazuya urged Prime Minister Abe Shinzo on February 3 to drastically review the current government policy on the territorial negotiations with Russia and to demand the return of the Chishima Islands based on the principle of “non-territorial expansion”.

At the Lower House Budget Committee session, Hatayama quoted former islanders as saying that they were “disappointed” at the Japan-Russia summit meeting in December. Hatayama condemned PM Abe for shelving the territorial issue at the meeting while promising to offer economic cooperation to Russia.

Hatayama referred to President Vladimir Putin’s remarks made at the joint press conference following the summit meeting that the former Soviet Union regained the Southern Kurile (Chishima) Islands after WWII according to the 1945 Yalta Agreement. Hatayama pointed out that that was a secret agreement in which Britain and the United States allowed the Soviet Union to acquire those islands in exchange for its joining the war against Japan. “This agreement is in clear violation of the postwar international principle of ‘non-territorial expansion’,” he stressed.

Hatayama asked PM Abe, “Did you refute Putin’s claim by pointing to the injustice of the Yalta agreement?” Abe replied that he is in no position to point out the contradictions between the agreement and the postwar principle as Japan was not a party to the pact. “The territorial issue won’t be resolved just by rebutting our counterpart,” he added.

Hatayama said, “It’s a matter of course for the Japanese prime minister to refute his Russian counterpart based on historical facts.” He noted that the Foreign Ministry’s official documents show that successive Japanese governments, including the first Abe administration, have never pointed out how unfair the Yalta Agreement is in the territorial talks with Moscow. He added that such weak-kneed diplomacy has led to Putin’s recent statement that “we have no territorial problems” with Japan.

Criticizing PM Abe’s “new approach” featuring economic cooperation with Russia, the JCP legislator underscored the need to negotiate with Moscow in accordance with the international principle of “non-territorial expansion”.

Past related article:
> PM Abe’s diplomatic policy reaches deadlock [January 9, 2017]
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