+7 (701) 759 90 19
USD 383.95 EUR 429.26
RUB 6.16 CNY 55.02
News

Russia might drop visa-free exchange with Japan

8 July 2009 17:10
Share in:

TOKYO. July 8. KAZINFORM A Japanese delegation numbering 65 who are visiting South Kurils in the framework of a visa-free exchange has gone ashore on Iturup Wednesday despite earlier protests voiced by Iturup residents against continuing such contacts following a bill adopted by Japan that proclaimed the southern part of the Kuril mountain ridge a territory historically belonging to Japan, Kazinform refers to Itar-Tass.

Tokyo's bill declaring the South Kuril Islands part of Japan has no legal force, the presidential envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District, Viktor Ishayev, told reporters on Wednesday.

Head of the Russian South Kuril regions Igor Koval told Kyodo Tsushin that Russia negatively reacted to the recent bill passed by Japan because the bill reduces all the achievements made over the past 17 years practically to nil.

Head of the Kuril region Nikolai Razumishkin declared at a meeting with the Japanese delegation that the region drops visa-free contacts with neighbors. Razumishkin also voiced protest against the a clause of the Japanese bill pertaining to the "historical territories." "We have made a decision not to continue visa-free exchange until the Japanese government annuls its unilateral document," Razumishkin said. As a representative of a governing body Razumishkin declared protest to the Japanese government.

On Tuesday the Japanese delegation visited neighboring Kunashir where the Japanese visitors met the Russian population and visited the graves of their Japanese ancestors where prayer services were delivered.

It was not exactly known whether the delegation would be able to fulfill the program of the visit in full. The Japanese delegation will stay on board their ship overnight, and on Thursday they are expected to go ashore on Iturup once again. The delegation is planning to return to Japan on July 10.

Russia and Japan began visa free exchange between residents of South Kurils and Japan in 1992. The visa free exchange was introduced to intensify contacts practiced for humanitarian reasons on a regional level.

Tokyo does not let its citizens get Russian visas for visits to South Kurils so as not to confirm Russia's sovereignty over these territories. Nonetheless, the Japanese residents who had earlier lived on South Kurils insisted on visits to South Kurils for purposes of looking after the graves of their ancestors, Kazinform cites Itar-Tass. See www.itar-tass.com for full version.


Keywords:
Share in:

Author:

+7
Send
Read also
Employees online
Editor
Nurmaganbetova Zhanna
Nurmaganbetova Zhanna
954-048
Editor
Kudrenok Tatyana
Kudrenok Tatyana
954-048
Editor
Raushan Alzhanova
Raushan Alzhanova
954-048

Archive