| Disputed island |
Native name: Ainu: エツ゚ヲロㇷ゚シㇼ
Other names: Russian: Итуру́п; Japanese: 択捉島
|Location||Sea of Okhotsk|
|Area||3,139 km2 (1,212 sq mi)|
|Length||200 km (120 mi)|
|Width||27 km (17 mi)|
|Federal subject||Sakhalin Oblast|
|Population||7,500 (as of 2003)|
Iturup (Russian : Остров Итуру́п, romanized: Ostrov Iturúp ; Ainu : エツ゚ヲロㇷ゚シㇼ, romanized: Etuworop=sir; Japanese : 択捉島, romanized: Etorofu-tō, historically also called Etrof and Yetorup) is one of the Kuril Islands. It was formerly known as Staten Island. It is the largest and northernmost island in the southern Kurils, ownership of which is disputed by Japan and Russia.
The island was Japanese territory since 1855 until the end of the Second World War in 1945, when Soviet forces took possession of all the Kurils and forced out Japanese residents. The island is still claimed by Japan, which considers a site on Iturup to be its northernmost point.
Iturup is located near the southern end of the Kuril chain, between Kunashiri (19 km to the SW) and Urup (37 km to the NE). The town of Kurilsk, administrative center of Kurilsky District, is located roughly midway along its western shore.
Iturup and Urup are separated by the Vries Strait, named after Dutch explorer Maarten Gerritsz Vries, the first recorded European to explore the area.
Iturup consists of volcanic massifs and mountain ridges. A series of a dozen calc-alkaline volcanoes running NE to SW form the backbone of the island, the highest being Stokap (1,634 m) in the central part of Iturup. The shores of the island are high and abrupt. The vegetation mostly consists of spruce, larch, pine, fir, and mixed deciduous forests with alder, lianas and Kuril bamboo underbrush. The mountains are covered with birch and Siberian Dwarf Pine scrub, herbaceous flowers (including Fragaria iturupensis , the Iturup strawberry) or bare rocks.
The island also contains some high waterfalls, such as the Ilya Muromets.
Rheniite, a rhenium sulfide mineral (ReS2), was discovered in active hot fumaroles on Kudriavy volcano and first described in 2004. In the field it was originally mistaken for molybdenite.
The native inhabitants of Iturup and the Kuril islands are the Ainu. They lived there since before the 14th century.
Iturup was reached in 1661 by the Japanese Shichirobei and his fellows after they had drifted there. The island saw both a Russian settlement (late 18th century) and a Japanese garrison (1800) at the site of the present-day Kurilsk. In 1855 Iturup was ceded to Japan by the Treaty of Shimoda. Its name comes from the Ainu エツ゚ヲロㇷ゚ (Etuworop), meaning "Place possessing [many] capes."
On 26 November 1941, a Japanese carrier fleet left Hitokappu Bay (now called Kasatka Bay), on the eastern shore of Iturup, and sailed for an attack on the American base of Pearl Harbor.
Shana Village was located on Iturup (Etorofu) in the Showa era, before 1945. It was the administrative capital of the Kuril islands. There was a village hospital, an Etorofu Fisheries factory, a radio tower of the post office with a radio receiving antenna. The receiver was battery-powered.
In 1945, according to decisions of the Yalta Conference, it was occupied by the Soviet Union after Japan's defeat in World War II. The Japanese inhabitants were expelled to mainland Japan. as of 2021 [update] , has not been concluded due to the disputed status of Iturup and some other nearby islands.In 1956 the two countries agreed to restore diplomatic relations, but a peace treaty,
A Soviet Anti-Air Defense (PVO) airfield, Burevestnik (English: storm-petrel), is located on the island and was until 1993 home for a number of Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-23 fighter jets.In 1968, Seaboard World Airlines Flight 253A was intercepted over the Kurils and forced to land at Burevestnik with 214 American troops bound for Vietnam. An older airfield, Vetrovoe, exists on the eastern part of the island and may have been used primarily by Japanese forces during World War II.
A new international airport, Iturup Airport, was opened in 2014, 7 kilometres (4+1⁄2 miles) east of Kurilsk. It was the first airport built from scratch in Russia's post-Soviet history. It has a 2.3-kilometre-long (7,500 ft), 42-metre-wide (138 ft) runway and can receive Antonov An-74-200 aircraft. It also has a military use. The Burevestnik military airfield 60 km (37 mi) to the south, in the past received civilian aircraft as well, but was often closed because of fog. Burevestnik is now a reserve airfield for the new airport. On February 2, 2018, PBS NewsHour reported that Russia announced it is sending fighter planes to Iturup. Su-35 aircraft landed on a reserve airfield on the island in March 2018 and Su-35s were then deployed to Iturup airport on a trial basis in August 2018.
Administratively the island belongs to the Sakhalin Oblast of the Russian Federation. Japan claims Iturup as part of Nemuro Subprefecture.
The Kuril Islands or Kurile Islands is a volcanic archipelago part of Sakhalin Oblast in the Russian Far East. It stretches approximately 1,300 km (810 mi) northeast from Hokkaido in Japan to Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia separating the Sea of Okhotsk from the north Pacific Ocean. There are 56 islands and many minor rocks. The Kuril Islands consist of the Greater Kuril Chain and the Lesser Kuril Chain. They cover an area of around 10,503.2 square kilometres (4,055.3 sq mi), with a population of roughly 20,000.
The Kuril Islands dispute, also known in Japan as the Northern Territories dispute, is a disagreement between Japan and Russia and also some individuals of the Ainu people over sovereignty of the four southernmost Kuril Islands. The Kuril Islands is a chain of islands that stretch between the Japanese island of Hokkaido at the southern end and the Russian Kamchatka Peninsula at the northern end. The islands separate the Sea of Okhotsk from the Pacific Ocean. The four disputed islands, like other islands in the Kuril chain that are not in dispute, were annexed by the Soviet Union following the Kuril Islands landing operation at the end of World War II. The disputed islands are under Russian administration as the South Kuril District of the Sakhalin Oblast. They are claimed by Japan, which refers to them as its Northern Territories or Southern Chishima, and considers them part of the Nemuro Subprefecture of Hokkaido Prefecture.
The Treaty of Saint Petersburg between the Empire of Japan and Empire of Russia was signed on 7 May 1875, and its ratifications exchanged at Tokyo on 22 August 1875. The treaty itself went into effect in 1877.
Nemuro is a subprefecture of Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan. Japan claims the southern parts of the disputed Kuril Islands as part of this subprefecture.
Severo-Kurilsk is a town and the administrative center of Severo-Kurilsky District of Sakhalin Oblast, Russia, located in the northern part of the Kuril Islands, on the island of Paramushir. Population: 2,536 (2010 Census); 2,592 (2002 Census); 5,180 (1989 Census).
Kunashir Island, possibly meaning Black Island or Grass Island in Ainu, is the southernmost island of the Kuril Islands archipelago. The island is currently under Russian control, though Japan also claims the island.
Shikotan, also known as Shpanberg, is an island in the Kurils administered by the Russian Federation as part of Yuzhno-Kurilsky District of Sakhalin Oblast. It is claimed by Japan as the nominal Shikotan District, part of Nemuro Subprefecture of Hokkaido Prefecture.
Chishima Province was a province of Japan created during the Meiji Era. It originally contained the Kuril Islands from Kunashiri northwards, and later incorporated Shikotan as well. Its original territory is currently occupied by Russia, and its territory was renounced in the San Francisco Treaty.
Urup is an uninhabited volcanic island in the Kuril Islands chain in the south of the Sea of Okhotsk, northwest Pacific Ocean. Its name is derived from the Ainu language word for salmon trout. It was formerly known as Company's Land.
Paramushir, is a volcanic island in the northern portion of Kuril Islands chain in the Sea of Okhotsk in the northwest Pacific Ocean. It is separated from Shumshu by the very narrow Second Kuril Strait in the northeast 2.5 km (1.6 mi), from Antsiferov by the Luzhin Strait to the southwest, from Atlasov in the northwest by 20 km (12 mi), and from Onnekotan in the south by the 40 km (25 mi) wide Fourth Kuril Strait. Its northern tip is 39 km (24 mi) from Cape Lopatka at the southern tip of the Kamchatka Peninsula. Its name is derived from the Ainu language, from “broad island” or “populous island”. Severo-Kurilsk, the administrative center of the Severo-Kurilsky district, is the only permanently populated settlement on Paramushir island.
Matua is an uninhabited volcanic island near the center of the Kuril Islands chain in the Sea of Okhotsk in the northwest Pacific Ocean, 16 kilometers (9.9 mi) across Golovnin Strait from Raikoke. Its name is derived from the Ainu language, from “hellmouth”.
Ketoy is an uninhabited volcanic island located in the centre of the Kuril Islands chain in the Sea of Okhotsk in the northwest Pacific Ocean. Its name is derived from the Ainu language for "skeleton" or "bad".
Kharimkotan ; Japanese 春牟古丹島; Harimukotan-tō, alternatively Harumukotan-tō or 加林古丹島; Karinkotan-tō) is an uninhabited volcanic island located 15 km (9 mi) from Onekotan near the northern end of the Kuril Islands chain in the Sea of Okhotsk in the northwest Pacific Ocean. Its name is derived from the Ainu language, from “village of many Cardiocrinum”.
Kurilsk is a town and the administrative center of Kurilsky District of Sakhalin Oblast, Russia, located on the island of Iturup. Population: 2,070 (2010 Census); 2,233 (2002 Census); 2,699 (1989 Census).
Yuzhno-Kurilsk is an urban locality and the administrative center of Yuzhno-Kurilsky District of Sakhalin Oblast, Russia. Population: 5,832 (2010 Census); 5,751 (2002 Census); 6,344 (1989 Census). It is the largest settlement on the Kunashir Island of the Kuril Islands.
Ushishir is an uninhabited volcanic island located in the centre of the Kuril Islands chain in the Sea of Okhotsk in the northwest Pacific Ocean. Its name is derived from the Ainu language for "hot spring".
Burevestnik is a military air base on Iturup Island, Russia, establishing the nation's presence on the disputed South Kuril Islands with the largest airfield in the region. It is also the former Soviet Union's most remote interceptor base, home of 387 IAP. During the 1970s, it flew MiG-21bis and upgraded to MiG-23 jets in 1983. An Army helicopter combat support squadron was also stationed at the airfield in the early 1980s, providing limited fire support and transport capability. Burevestnik's communications and logistics were tied to Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk and supplies were flown in weekly on An-12 aircraft.
Iturup Airport is a public airport on Iturup Island, Russia. It is located 7 km (4.3 mi) northeast of the town of Kurilsk.
The Japan–Russia border is the de facto maritime boundary that separates the territorial waters of the two countries. According to the Russia border agency, the border's length is 194.3 km (120.7 mi).