I never expected to hear this. Putin is sounding a little more cornered.
“We are ready for talks,” Putin told a group of foreign journalists at the sidelines of the St Petersburg International Economic Forum. “Is Japan ready? I’m not yet sure myself.”
The two countries have been involved in a decades-old dispute over islands north of Hokkaido, known as Kurile in Russia and referred to as the Northern Territories in Japan.
Russia will of course try to draw out any negotiations so they won’t have to make any real concessions. However, if a favorable deal can be nailed down, it would be wise of Japan to jump at the opportunity, even though it would probably undercut their Atlantic allies.
Ukrainian-type crises come and go, but the opportunity to regain Japanese soil from the Russians is not likely to come again soon.