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In the Vicinity of Japan: the Life of Russians on the Kuril Islands

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The Kuril islands dispute has been souring relations between Russia and Japan for decades and remains the main stumbling block to signing a permanent peace treaty post-World War II.

Russo-Japanese relations continue to develop steadily but are complicated by Tokyo’s continued territorial claims to the South Kurils archipelago. 

Russia-Japan cultural exchange plays a special role in promoting the bilateral ties between the countries. The year 2018 has been announced as a Russo-Japanese cross-culture year.

More and more Japanese citizens are traveling visa-free to the south Kurils under the July 2, 1986 agreement on mutual visits to Japanese and Russian burial sites.

© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankShpanberg Lighthouse in Kurils Nature Reserve at Shikotan Island.
Shpanberg Lighthouse in Kurils Nature Reserve at Shikotan Island - Sputnik International
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Shpanberg Lighthouse in Kurils Nature Reserve at Shikotan Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankKunashir Island residents are learning to write Japanese characters.
Kunashir Island Residents are Learning to Write Japanese Characters - Sputnik International
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Kunashir Island residents are learning to write Japanese characters.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankJapanese household items found among excavations on Kunashir Island.
Japanese Household Items Found Among Excavations on Kunashir Island - Sputnik International
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Japanese household items found among excavations on Kunashir Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankFishermen are trying to catch salmon near the Okhotsk Sea embankment on Kunashir Island.
Fishermen Trying to Catch Salmon Near the Okhotsk Sea Embankment on Kunashir Island. - Sputnik International
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Fishermen are trying to catch salmon near the Okhotsk Sea embankment on Kunashir Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankThe warning sign at the border control zone on Shikotan Island.
The Warning Sign at the Border Control Zone on Shikotan Island - Sputnik International
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The warning sign at the border control zone on Shikotan Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankA local citizen is practicing gymnastics on Shikotan Island.
A Local Citizen is Practicing Gymnastics on Shikotan Island - Sputnik International
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A local citizen is practicing gymnastics on Shikotan Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankShikotan Island residents are cooking crabs.
Shikotan Island Residents are Cooking Crabs - Sputnik International
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Shikotan Island residents are cooking crabs.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankSea urchin production.
Sea Urchin Production - Sputnik International
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Sea urchin production.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankThe representative of visa-free Japan's delegation at the old Japanese cemetery in Yuzhno-Kurilsk on Kunashir Island.
The Representative of Visa-Free Japan's Delegation at Old Japanese Cemetery on Yuzhno-Kurilsk in Kunashir Island - Sputnik International
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The representative of visa-free Japan's delegation at the old Japanese cemetery in Yuzhno-Kurilsk on Kunashir Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankFarewell event for visa-free departing Japanese delegation on Kunashir Island.
Farewell Event for Visa-Free Departing Japanese Delegation on Kunashir Island - Sputnik International
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Farewell event for visa-free departing Japanese delegation on Kunashir Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankMonument dedicated to pioneers of Kuril Islands at the central square on Yuzhno-Kurilsk on Kunashir Island.
Monument Dedicated to Pioneers of Kuril Islands at the Central Square in Yuzhno-Kurilsk on Kunashir Island - Sputnik International
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Monument dedicated to pioneers of Kuril Islands at the central square on Yuzhno-Kurilsk on Kunashir Island.
© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the photo bankA sunset on Kunashir Island.
A Sunset on Kunashir Island - Sputnik International
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A sunset on Kunashir Island.
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