Japan said yesterday it wanted Russia to return all four Kuril islands, snubbing Moscow's renewed talk of returning two of them to end the dispute that has prevented the countries from formally ending World War II. \nPrime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said "Japan cannot be content" with the return of two of the four islands just off northern Japan, which were seized by Soviet troops in 1945. \n"We maintain the policy of concluding a peace treaty only after clarifying who owns the [all] four of the islands," Koizumi told reporters. \nThe government said Koizumi would raise the Kuril dispute with Russian President Vladimir Putin if they meet on the sidelines of a summit of the APEC forum in Chile this weekend. \nChief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki Hosoda said "Japan and Russia have a common policy" that they will conclude a peace treaty by resolving the status of all four islands. "We have not changed our stance of continuing strenuous negotiations in accordance with this policy," Hosoda, the top government spokesman, told a news conference. \nForeign Minister Nobutaka Machimura said it was not appropriate to react to each remark by Russian leaders over the dispute. \nThe renewed focus on the peace deal comes amid Japanese efforts to outbid China for a new oil pipeline from Siberia that could quench Asia's growing energy thirst. \nThe issue of the Kurils, whose Japanese residents were expelled after the Soviet takeover, has prevented the two nations from signing a post-war peace treaty and restricted Japanese investment in Russia. Putin said Monday he was ready to revive peace talks with Japan on the islands -- Habomai, Shikotan, Etorofu and Kunashiri. \n"We have always implemented and will continue to implement our [Soviet era] obligations -- especially ratified documents -- but of course only to the extent to which our partners are ready to implement these very same agreements," Putin said in televised remarks. \nHis comments referred to a 1956 declaration signed between Moscow and Tokyo in which Japan would receive two of the four islands in exchange for signing a peace treaty. \nPutin is due to visit Japan next year to commemorate the signing of the first treaty between Japan and tsarist Russia 150 years ago. \nKoizumi has demonstrated his determination for Japan to resume control of the islands, sailing near Habomai in September after ignoring Russian warnings that the trip would hamper talks on a bilateral peace treaty.
China is racing to quash a new COVID-19 flareup that risks spilling over into one of its most economically significant regions, raising the specter of disruptions that could roil global supply chains for solar panels, medicines and semiconductors. Infections have surged in Si County in the eastern province of Anhui, with officials reporting 287 cases for Sunday and nearly 1,000 since late last week. Authorities locked down Si and a neighboring county late last week to try and stop the virus from spreading to Jiangsu Province, the second-biggest contributor to China’s economic output and a globally important manufacturing hub for the
A flight test of a hypersonic missile system in Hawaii on Wednesday ended in failure due to a problem that occurred after ignition, the US Department of Defense said, delivering a fresh blow to a program that has experienced stumbles. It did not provide details of what took place in the test, but said in an e-mailed statement that “the department remains confident that it is on track to field offensive and defensive hypersonic capabilities on target dates beginning in the early 2020s.” “An anomaly occurred following ignition of the test asset,” Pentagon spokesman US Navy Lieutenant Commander Tim Gorman said in
OPPOSITION PROTESTS: Many people in Myanmar suspect China of supporting the military takeover, while Beijing has refused to condemn last year’s army power grab China’s top diplomat on Saturday arrived on his first visit to Myanmar since the military seized power last year to attend a regional meeting that the Burmese government said was a recognition of its legitimacy and opponents protested as a violation of peace efforts. Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅) is to join counterparts from Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam in a meeting of the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation group in the central city of Bagan, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The grouping is a Chinese-led initiative that includes the countries of the Mekong Delta, a potential source of regional tensions
CERN UPGRADES: ompared with the collider’s first run that discovered the Higgs boson in 2012, this time around there would be 20 times more collisions Ten years after it discovered the Higgs boson, the Large Hadron Collider is about to start smashing protons together at unprecedented energy levels in its quest to reveal more secrets about how the universe works. The world’s largest and most powerful particle collider started back up in April after a three-year break for upgrades in preparation for its third run. From today it will run around the clock for nearly four years at a record energy of 13.6 trillion electronvolts, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) announced at a news conference last week. It is to send two beams of protons