Russian Federation deploys missiles to Baltic

Russian Federation has deployed advanced missiles to contested islands claimed by Japan, but the Kremlin says there is no reason this should derail peace talks.

Japan says it will consider "appropriate" measures in response to the Russian anti-ship missile systems, deployed on the disputed Kuril Islands.

The Kurils are volcanic islands situated between Russia's Kamchatka peninsula and Japan's Hokkaido Island.

The dispute over the islands, known as the Kuriles in Russian Federation and the Northern Territories in Japan, has strained relations between the two countries since World War Two when Soviet forces occupied four islands at the southern end of the chain, and Moscow and Tokyo have still not signed a formal peace treaty ending wartime hostilities.

In an interview with American filmmaker Oliver Stone included in a documentary about the Ukrainian crisis broadcast in Russian Federation late Monday, Putin warned that Russian Federation would target North Atlantic Treaty Organisation sites if it thinks they threaten Russian Federation. The deployment of missiles is not exactly conducive to peace talks though.

Russian Federation has attempted to smooth over the latest episode in its missile diplomacy, with a Kremlin spokesman saying he hoped the stationing of anti-ship missiles on disputed islands off the Japanese coast would not spoil bilateral relations ahead of a visit by Vladimir Putin to Japan.

"But at the same time from our point of view it should not in any way influence the centripetal trend which exists in our bilateral relations with Tokyo", Peskov said on a conference call with reporters. The decision to place the missiles in Russia's westernmost region was made after an American ABM (anti-ballistic missile) system was stationed in two Eastern European NATO countries, Romania and Poland. The Bal complex is armed with X-35 anti-ship missiles.

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