Japanese PM Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin (Source: TASS)
Japanese PM Shinzo Abe’s visit marks the 25th time he and Russian President Vladimir Putin have met since 2013, a reflection of their efforts to build co-operation despite their territorial disagreement.
"Delicate work is needed to create conditions for reaching a mutually acceptable solution," Putin said. "A settlement that negotiators would propose must be acceptable to the people of Russia and Japan and supported by the public."
The two leaders agreed in November last year to accelerate negotiations on a peace treaty based on a 1956 joint declaration stating that two of the four islands would be handed over to Japan after the conclusion of a bilateral peace treaty.
They also committed to holding their next summit in Japan in June, after Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Japanese counterpart Taro Kono meet in February./.