Hi Blog. Just a little humorous aside.
Nothing like a little casual illegal entry to help make one of the world’s disputed borders (the Northern Territories, islands seized by USSR at the end of WWII and reason why there is no peace treaty to this day (only an armistice) between Japan and Russia) more disputed. Especially when it’s over a case of beer.
Russian fishermen dropping into Japan to buy beer detained
ITAR-TASS 08.04.2007, 06.20
TOKYO, April 8 (Itar-Tass) — A Russian fisherman catching sea urchins decided to “drop into” Japan quickly to buy beer and was arrested on Saturday for illegally entering the country.
The incident took place in Nemuro on the eastern coast of Hokkaido close to the Southern Kuriles.
The Japanese police said, referring to the detained man’s words, that he together with his colleagues fished near the Southern Kuriles. While his fellow fishermen picked sea urchins from the seabed, the 29-year-old man decided to quickly go on a rubber pneumatic boat with an engine to Nemuro to buy beer. He presented a 10,000-yen bill (about 83 dollars) and bought a box of bottles of beer.
However, members of a local fishing cooperative informed police about the suspicious boat, and the police thwarted the attempt of the man, who had no documents to enter Japan, to leave Nemuro.
The man was arrested at 11:48 local time (06:48 Moscow time), about an hour after he reached the coast. He remained in the police office in Nemuro. The police suppose the fisherman had no bad intentions, but say he had alcohol smell.
Japanese authorities informed the Vladivostok sea rescue centre that the detained person was a crewmember from a Russian schooner. Supposedly, the vessel is from the Sakhalin port of Nevelsk.
The Nemuro police do not remember such incidents happening ever before. At the same time, 30 years ago, in 1977, Soviet border guards detained a Japanese who managed to swim to Signalny Island that is within the territory claimed by Japan.
As the posters to this site poignantly ask, whatever happened to the beer? Debito