MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Regarding a peace treaty, the sides had "a frank and meaningful discussion of the issue [in Nagato] and would continue it in Tokyo."
"Japan expects that the leaders of our states will discuss in detail the problem of a peace treaty and future of the Russian-Japanese relations, based primarily on trust. Today, after nearly a three-hour conversation with Mr Putin, Prime Minister [Shinzo] Abe said that the meeting was held in a friendly atmosphere. The leaders of Russia and Japan discussed the issues of bilateral relations and the international agenda," Kawamura said.
According to Kawamura, "the issue of a peace treaty between Russia and Japan has been acute for more than 70 years," so the current talks mean a lot.
"This is an unusual situation, that is why both leaders agreed to pay to it special attention," he said.
Putin is currently in Japan with a working visit, which is widely seen as a breakthrough in the Russian-Japanese relations, taking into account that it had been postponed since 2014.
The Russian-Japanese relations are tainted by the territorial dispute between the two countries. Japan lays claims to the islands of Kunashir, Shikotan, Habomai and Iturup, which Russia calls the Southern Kurils and Japan the Northern Territories. The territorial dispute has led to the situation that Moscow and Tokyo have never signed a permanent peace treaty after World War II.