Russia & Japan inch closer to treaty

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is set to meet his Japanese counterpart Masahiko Komura in Moscow. Several topical issues, including the Kuril Islands question, are to be discussed.

Masahiko Komura has said Tokyo hopes that talks between Russia and Japan will help make headway in signing a peace treaty.

Russia and Japan have failed to sign a formal peace treaty following World War II over their dissension on the territorial status of South Kuril Islands.

The meeting will also help plan ahead for President-elect Dmitry Medvedev's forthcoming visit to Japan and Japanese Prime Minister Yasao Fukuda's trip to Russia.

Economic co-operation between the two countries has grown in recent years.

Japan’s Foreign Minister has also visited the Toyota plant near St. Petersburg the day before.