Sakhalin is the largest island of Russia in the Pacific ocean.
The population of the Islands according the 2010 is about 493 thousand people. Mostly live on Sakhalin ethnic Russian, and a small Korean community and the indigenous people — the Ainu, Orok, and Nivkh.
Until the mid-nineteenth century, Sakhalin was chiefly under the Chinese influence, however, by the end of the century the island was divided between the Russian Empire and Japan. In 1875, according to the agreement Russia took Sakhalin, passing in return of Japan’s Northern Kuril Islands. About the same time was the beginning of the Sakhalin links and hard labor.
After the Second world war and the victory over Japan in the part of the Soviet Union were included all the territory of Sakhalin island (as well as the Kurile Islands). Most Ainu moved to Hokkaido.
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