Who actually owns the Kuril Islands? This issue has become a lump in my throat as for the Russians and the Japanese. After all, to conclude a peace Treaty, which de facto broke off after the Second World war, will not succeed without addressing this problem. Besides, Russia is still afraid of losing these territories, because they are of strategic importance.
After all, the Kuril Islands is access to the sea of Okhotsk, the deployment of military bases and increasing the combat potential. If the Kremlin will lose control over the Kuril Islands, the American ships would be free to go in the sea of Okhotsk.
What is known about the Kuril Islands?
The Kuril Islands are 56 Islands, located between Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula and the Japanese prefectural Hokkaido. It is not only the island, but the sharp rocks and uninhabitable areas.
Despite the fact that the total area of these lands is more than 10 thousand square kilometers (which is slightly more than in Chernivtsi oblast) there live about 20 people.
Kuril Islands striking beauty
However, there are a lot of sharp rocks
And unfit for permanent residence territories
When did the Kuril conflict?
In General, the history of the Kuril conflict began in 1855, since Moscow and Tokyo signed the Treaty of Shimoda.
What is the Simodsky contract? Document of 9 paragraphs was intended to prevent military conflict between Russia and Japan through the division of the Kuril Islands. According to the agreement, and they were divided by the Strait of the frieze: everything to the island Iturup – Japanese and from the island of Urup – Russian.
Despite the fact that a clear separation was, the Islands remained undivided property of both countries. In 20 years, that is in 1875, the Kuriles redistributed: Japan got all the Islands, and Russia southern Sakhalin.
As all the Kurile Islands were from Russia?
This happened after the Second World war. Japan, which at that time supported Adolf Hitler, in 1941 he signed an agreement with Soviet neutrality Pact, which was to last until 1946. That is, in the event of an attack on one of the other parties will stay away. The Russians promises are not kept, and in February 1945 at the Yalta conference promised the United States to attack Japan in return South Sakhalin and the Kurile Islands. In August, the Soviet Union began the offensive.
Please give Sakhalin and the Kuril Islands did not cause any controversy, because it was the territory of Japan, US adversaries, the Americans easily gave Stalin desired,
– explained the historian françois Kersaudy.
To finally “lick” the wounds of the Second World war, in 1951 Japan signed the San Francisco peace Treaty. Thus the country officially confirmed that the control over the Kuril Islands is completely lost, but the Russian rule over them, the Japanese did not recognize. The document was supported by 49 countries, but the Soviet diplomats did not sign it, because, de jure, was not clearly spelled out right to these territories, thereby leaving the question open. And now Tokyo justifiably claim to these territories.
Would not refuse to sign a peace Treaty in 1951 in San Francisco, there would be territorial issues,
– commented on the situation former Minister of foreign Affairs of Russia Evgenie Primakov.
Now negotiate like Russia and Japan?
Negotiations between Tokyo and Moscow are conducted on the basis of the 1956 Declaration. According to her, Moscow offered Tokyo two Islands: Shikotan and Habomai. However with one condition – there should be no American military bases, which, among other things, and so are located in different parts of Japan. Such an agreement was immediately dismissed as Tokyo requires at least 4 Islands. But Russia made clear – such a scenario has the right to life.
“Now, when we come back to the conversation on the basis of the 1956 Declaration, of course, we should note that since then, the situation regarding military alliances Japan has changed dramatically,” – says the Minister of foreign Affairs of Russia Sergey Lavrov.
Very sad that we have not signed a peace Treaty with Russia. We have repeatedly tried, but this time we need to change our approach. Come up with a new way
said the Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo.
“The current state is not normal. Both Japan and Russia are interested in the complete settlement of our relations. Not only because we have something from Japan need from the point of view of the economy,” – commented the question on the Kuril Islands, Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Why Kuril Islands are so important?
- Economically it is not a very attractive area for tourism there is not developed, and there are practically no business from industry – fishing.
- Russian scientists claim that there are very large deposits of rhenium is one of the most expensive metals in the world, which is used primarily in electronics. According to the Russians, it is actively mined by the Japanese, because Moscow has no money for it.
- Regarding strategic purpose, it is access to the sea of Okhotsk, the deployment of military bases and increasing the combat potential. If the Kremlin will lose control over the Kuril Islands, the American ships would be free to go in the sea of Okhotsk. Besides, Washington will have a chance to increase its military presence on the Islands. And as you know, in Okhotskom sea is already based warships to Moscow.
Of course, we are concerned about the U.S. plans on ABM systems (missile defense). We do not believe that it is a defensive weapon. It is part of American strategic nuclear forces imposed on the periphery,
– said the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin.
Although, according to themselves as American military bases Washington needed to deter the DPRK’s nuclear capability. Because the missiles that were previously launched Kim Jong-UN, flying over and in the sea of Japan.
Our base here for a reason. We do not take it for granted, rather as a necessity. Not only we, but the Japanese themselves understand the need of our military cooperation,
– said Colonel, U.S. air force Kenneth moss.
The mood of the masses of Japan and Russia
If we talk about the mood of the masses, only 5% of Japanese are dissatisfied with the government’s decision to only return 2 Islands, 46% agree even on a compromise and 33% require the return of all 4 territories.
As for Russia, all as always: “Crimea is ours!”, “Our Kurils” – is nothing new.
The Inscription In Vladivostok, Russia
How to solve the issue of the Kuril Islands?
However, according to the American researcher Emmy Quillen, legal levers to address this issue does not exist, both arguments are equivalent: remains, perhaps, a political compromise. But to achieve it will not be easy.
The Japanese have their arguments:
- Moscow had violated the neutrality Pact of 1941. If the Union didn’t attack Tokyo, the Islands would remain part of Japan.
- The Russians refused to sign the San Francisco peace and, therefore, have no right to the Kuril Islands.
In Moscow his argument:
- The annexation of the Kuril Islands – a consequence of the Second World war, and therefore not appealable.
Arguments on both sides do not allow for a solution. Specifically, this territorial dispute can be solved only through the strict international legal standards,
– said the American researcher Emmy Quillen.