MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Earlier, senior Japanese Foreign Ministry official Toshihiro Aiki commenting on relations between Moscow and Tokyo noted that "not all results of World War II have been summed up," and the so-called territorial issue between the countries remains to be addressed.
"We express our sincere regret that the Japanese side attempts to launch a public discussion on the sensitive issue of bilateral relations, even allowing an arbitrary and distorted interpretation of historical facts to take place," the ministry said in a statement, addressing recent remarks by Aiki.
Japan and Russia never signed a permanent peace treaty after the end of World War II because of a disagreement over four islands, which Russia calls the Southern Kurils while Japan refers to them as the Northern Territories. The disputed islands, located in the Sea of Okhotsk, were claimed by Soviet forces at the end of WWII.
In September 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held bilateral talks on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, agreeing to step up negotiations on a mutually acceptable solution to their countries' territorial dispute.