China on Sunday voiced strong indignation over a remark made by Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Aso, who credited Taiwan's current high education standard to Japan's colonial rule. In defiance of the joint communiqué signed in 1972 when China and Japan established diplomatic ties, Aso also mentioned Taiwan as a "country" in his speech in Japan's prefecture of Fukuoka.
"We are shocked by and express our strong indignation over the Japanese foreign minister's remark of overtly glorifying its history of invasion," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Kong Quan said.
Taiwan has been an inalienable part of China. In 1895, after a war of aggression against China, Japan forced the Qing government to sign the unequal Treaty of Shimonoseki and forcibly occupied Taiwan.
Following Japan's World War II defeat in 1945, Taiwan was returned to China as required by the Potsdam Proclamation and the Cairo Declaration.
Japan's occupation "made Taiwan people suffer enslavement and brought grave disaster to the Chinese nation. It is a fact everyone in the world knows," Kong said. "The half century of colonization of the island was an evil aspect of the Japanese militaristic invasion against China."
Kong said Aso's remark distorted history and severely hurt the feelings of the Chinese people.
The move, just like lifting a rock only to drop it on his own feet, defies human justice and conscience and will ultimately bring ill benefit to Japan itself, Kong said.
Also on Sunday, Kong highlighted the US' adherence to the one-China policy, opposing the so-called "Taiwan independence."
On January 29, Taiwan leader Chen Shui-bian proposed the abolishment of the "National Unification Council (NUC) and the National Unification Guidelines" and talked of "applying for UN membership under the name of Taiwan."
A US Department spokesperson on January 30 repeated the one-China policy, saying the US opposes unilateral changes to the status quo across the Taiwan Straits.
"We hope the US and the international community will keep alert to the danger and severe damage caused by the so-called 'Taiwan independence'," Kong said.
"(We hope they will) support the Chinese government in striking at Taiwan separatist activities, promote the peaceful and stable development of cross-Straits relations and jointly keep peace and stability across the Straits and in the Asia-Pacific region," he said.
Chen's remarks again proved his separatist stance and "exposed the dangerous direction" of the Taiwan authorities to stimulate separatism and undermine cross-Straits relations, Kong added.
(Xinhua News Agency February 6, 2006)