Putin Shows Eagerness to Visit Disputed Islets

Reuters file photo
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with Governor of the Chukotka region Vladislav Kuznetsov in Anadyr, Russia, January 10, 2024.

Tokyo, Jan. 11 (Jiji Press)—Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday showed an eagerness to visit for the first time the northwestern Pacific islands at the center of a decades-old territorial dispute with Japan.

At a meeting with businesspeople in Khabarovsk in Russia’s Far East, Putin said that, unfortunately, he has never been to the Kuril Islands but that he will surely go there. They include the disputed islands known as the Northern Territories in Japan.

Expressing his support for a plan to modernize the airport in Kunashiri, one of the disputed islands, Putin said that tourism resources in the Kuril Islands should be developed.

In 2010, then Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited the Northern Territories, becoming the first Russian or Soviet leader to do so.

Later, Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and other senior Russian government officials traveled to the Northern Territories.