Japan protests Russian drills on disputed islands


Japan has lodged a "stern" protest with Russia over military exercises that are being held on the disputed Kuril islands, the Japanese foreign ministry said.

Soviet troops seized the islands just after Japan surrendered in World War II, with the long-standing dispute hampering trade and keeping Moscow and Tokyo from signing a post-war peace treaty.

Responding to questions about the drills, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told reporters earlier on Wednesday that "our country, for its part, can't accept this at all".

The exercises came after Russia scrapped a meeting with a Japanese minister in response to a new round of sanctions by Tokyo against senior figures involved in the annexation of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula.

The exercises are "extremely regrettable," said a foreign ministry spokesman on Wednesday. "We have filed a stern protest with the Russian embassy," he added.

Read more here: Business Spectator


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