Moscow will take into consideration Japan's request to ban third countries from fishing in the South Kuril area only if Tokyo pays heed to Russia's request concerning fishing in this area, declares Russian deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Losyukov in Tokyo on Wednesday. Commenting on Russia's request, he said the point at issue was to establish cooperation with the Japanese government and jointly fight Russian contraband seafood deliveries to Japan. Moscow is equally eager to enlist Tokyo's cooperation in its struggle to preserve and revive Far Eastern sea resources, he added. Losyukov, who headed a Russian delegation participating in Tuesday's bilateral foreign-ministry consultations in Tokyo, stressed the aforementioned points were bilateral requests, not demands of any kind. He also said Moscow would be "ready to sign a bilateral document or adopt a Russian-Japanese statement" on fishing in the Far East providing the sides managed to reach a compromise on the issues mentioned above.
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969