MOSCOW: Shigeru Kitamura, head of the secretariat of Japan's National Security Council, met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in a Moscow suburb Thursday, the Russian government said.
The two officials are believed to have exchanged views on bilateral negotiations to conclude a World War II peace treaty after resolving the two countries' territorial dispute over the four Russian-held islands off Hokkaido.
At the start of the meeting, Putin stressed that the two countries' relations are developing in a positive way. He also expressed a wish to set the date of his next meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
On Wednesday, Kitamura met with his Russian counterpart, Nikolai Patrushev, an aide to Putin. They talked about the bilateral relations, including security policies, and the situations in the Middle East and the Korean Peninsula.
In Tokyo on Thursday, Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference that it is important for Kitamura to "closely communicate with his counterparts in other countries."