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Russia and Japan are prepared to continue their dialogue toward a concluding a peace treaty that would put a formal end to World War II
Russia and Japan are prepared to continue their dialogue toward a concluding a peace treaty that would put a formal end to World War II, Russian President Putin said Monday. Putin said the process was "unlikely to be easy," and added that the two sides were explaining the logic of their positions. Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said the countries would work to end their differences. The treaty has not been signed because of a dispute centering around four of the Kuril Islands off Russia's far-eastern coast. Relations between the two countries have been strained in recent years due to the argument over the Kurils, as Japan claims sovereignty over four islands that became part of the Soviet Union after World War II. The issue remains unresolved and has prevented the signing of a peace treaty to end the state of war between the two countries. Putin said given good will, "and Russia has that will", a mutually acceptable solution could be found. He said both Russia and Japan were prepared to make compromises.
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