File photo. Photograph:( Zee News Network )
Japan's Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said on Tuesday (July 31) that Japan had asked Russia to reduce its military activity on the disputed Pacific Kuril islands.
"I have asked Russia to take a composed stance on their defence policies, for example with regards to their plans to strengthen their military potential on the four northern (Kuril) islands," Onodera said after meeting his Russian counterpart in Moscow.
Onodera also said that ground-based Aegis ballistic missile defence stations are meant to defend Japan and do not pose a threat to Russia.
Russia seized the Kuril islands, known as the Northern Territories in Japan, from Tokyo at the end of World War II and the territorial dispute over the islands is so acrimonious that Moscow and Tokyo have not yet signed a peace treaty to mark the end of the war.