Russia refuses Japan's dog gift for Putin

| Updated: Dec 12, 2016 21:25 IST

Tokyo [Japan], Dec. 12 (ANI): Russia has turned down a gift of a dog for President Vladimir Putin by Japan ahead of his meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe next week. According to a Japanese legislator, the government had planned to present Putin, who is known as a dog lover, with a male Akita as a companion to Yume, a female of the same breed that Japan gifted him in 2012, reports Xinhua. "Unfortunately, we heard from our counterparts, and our hope to present a bridegroom was dashed," Japan's Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Koichi Hagiuda said in a blog post on Friday. Putin will visit Japan on December 15-16 during which both leaders are expected to work towards reviving security talks and joint naval rescue training exercises that were halted after Russia's takeover of Crimea in 2014. Russia and Japan have yet not signed a peace treaty formalizing the end of World War II due to a territorial row over four small Pacific islands, known as the Southern Kurils in Russia and the Northern Territories in Japan. Japan is hoping to make progress on the territorial dispute during Putin's visit. However, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had said on Saturday that there should be no high expectations for any immediate progress on the signing of a peace treaty between Russia and Japan, as they still have difficulties in ironing out their differences. (ANI)