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Japan Says Russia 'Essential' To Solve Threats From Syria, North Korea

Japan’s foreign minister pledged on January 19 to continue talks with Russia, even though the two countries still lack a World War II peace treaty -- saying that Moscow is key to resolving international threats from Syria and North Korea.

Speaking in Tokyo, Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said a territorial dispute over islands north of the Japanese mainland has prevented Russia and Japan from technically ending their World War II hostilities.

But he said a diplomatic dialogue – “especially at a political level” -- is indispensable and that the two sides are seeking to hold summit talks later in 2016.

Kishida said the international community is “faced with challenges involving Syria and North Korea, and Russia’s constructive role is essential in resolving the problems.”

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters

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