The Hokkaido government's views on the
Northern Territories issue
The Four Northern Islands are Japanese territory we have inherited from our ancestors.
They have never been territories of any other country. There are also international agreements stating that they belong to Japan. Because the islands are currently illegally occupied by Russia, the basic policy of the Japanese government is to solve this problem through diplomatic negotiations, conclude a peace treaty between Japan and Russia and establish stable relations based on true mutual understanding between the two countries.
The Hokkaido government not only has demanded that the national government intensify diplomatic negotiations for an early solution of the territorial issue, but also has striven to improve the environment for the solution of the issue based on ideas 1 to 3 below.
1 ) The Northern Territories are an administrative district of Hokkaido. Because the solution of the territorial issue is closely related to the development of the prefecture and the lives of its citizens, the Hokkaido government considers the restoration of the Northern Territories as an important administrative objective and intends to promote a variety of necessary measures.
２）Because reversion of the Northern Territories is a diplomatic issue concerning a nation's sovereignty over its territory, the reversion campaign should be promoted mainly by the national government.
The Hokkaido government helps to improve the reversion campaign and works to find a solution to the territorial issue in cooperation with the national government. It also appeals to the national government to support the activities of municipalities and groups involved in the reversion campaign.
3)In view of the fact that the territorial issue remains unsolved, the Hokkaido government appeals to the national government to increase support for former residents, including realizing visits to graves in the Northern Territories and providing compensation for old fishing rights. The Hokkaido government also promotes various measures for the development of areas adjoining the Northern Territories (one city and four towns in the Nemuro district) and stabilization of the lives of the local residents in cooperation with the national government, taking into account the special circumstances of those areas.
Priority promotion items
Exchanges with the Four Northern Islands
Promotion of adjoining areas (Nemuro subprefecture)
Promotion of the Northern Island Exchange Center
Support measures for former residents