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INTERNATIONAL > Europe & Eurasia

Japanese interpreter on visa-free visit detained on Russian-held island

  • August 22, 2016
  • , Asahi
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Monday’s Asahi and Yomiuri wrote that a Japanese interpreter has been questioned by Russian authorities and is being detained on Kunashiri, one of the four Russian-held islands off Hokkaido, after visiting the island as part of a visa-free trip. This is the first time that a Japanese national has been held on an island disputed between Japan and Russia after visiting there under the bilateral visa-free program, which began in 1992. The interpreter was questioned by the Russians when he underwent a baggage inspection to leave the island. Russian media reported that a Japanese man carrying 4 million yen in cash was detained on Saturday because he had not declared possession of the money. However, they did not report whether it was the interpreter who was detained. MOFA called on Russia via its embassy in Tokyo to allow the interpreter leave the island.

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