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Japan Urged to Handle Taiwan Issues Appropriately
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China has already asked Japan to handle issues related to Taiwan in an "appropriate, well-considered" manner, the Foreign Ministry's spokesperson Kong Quan said at a regular press conference yesterday.


It is reported that former Taiwan leader Lee Teng-hui plans to visit Japan in May.


Kong noted that the reasons behind Lee's repeated attempts to visit Japan are to trumpet "Taiwan independence," sabotage the peaceful reunification of the mainland and Taiwan, and undermine Sino-Japanese relations.


China hopes that Japan will adhere to the principles enshrined in the three Sino-Japanese political documents including the China-Japan Joint Statement, and take concrete actions to demonstrate the commitment it has made so far to the Taiwan issue, Kong said.


Kong emphasized that the Taiwan issue concerns the core interests of China, the emotions of the Chinese people and the political foundation of Sino-Japanese relations.


Japan should take substantial actions to improve Sino-Japanese relations, Kong said.


Kong said China had taken note of the speech by Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and Foreign Minister Taro Aso on attaching importance to Japan's relations with China.


Koizumi vowed on January 20 in his annual policy speech to develop the future-oriented relations with China. Describing China as a very important neighbor, Koizumi said: "We will strengthen cooperation from a comprehensive standpoint to construct future-oriented relations based on trust."


In his speech, Aso said that strengthening relations with China is an unswerving fundamental policy of Japan.


The Chinese government, based on the spirit of learning from history and looking into the future, would continue its efforts to promote friendly and cooperative relations between China and Japan, Kong said.


East Asia WWII history


China, South Korea and Japan should jointly study East Asia World War II history, Kong said.


During his visit to Japan, United States Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick proposed that the US, China and Japan carry out joint research on WWII history, so as to narrow differences among the parties.


When asked to comment on Zoellick's proposal, Kong said China, South Korea and Japan should jointly carry out the research.


"We are glad to see that Chinese, South Korean and Japanese scholars have already made some helpful contributions in this field recently," Kong said, adding the China hopes the three countries can find ways to further promote cooperation on the research.


Six-party Korean nuclear talks


"All parties should be dedicated to bridging differences through dialogue and dealing properly with postponement factors so that the six-way talks can restart soon," Kong said.


He said when the six parties concluded the last phase of talks, they agreed to hold the second phase of the fifth-round talks at an early date.


"But it is worrying that new problems and complications have emerged during the follow-up process," he said.


When asked to comment on the reported meeting between Japan and North Korea in Beijing in early February, Kong said China supports the two countries' attempts to solve bilateral problems through one-on-one consultation.


The six-party talks, which aim to find a peaceful solution to the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, involve China, South and North Korea, the US, Russia and Japan. So far, the six countries have held five rounds of talks in Beijing.


Political stability in Nepal


China hopes that Nepal achieves stability as soon as possible, Kong said.


Nepal is one of China's friendly neighboring countries, and China is concerned about the current insurgency in Nepal, Kong said.


Kong expressed his hope that all parties involved in Nepal will narrow their differences through dialogue so as to contribute to the country's development and prosperity.


Nepal's anti-government guerillas announced an end to the ceasefire on January 2, and have since launched activities aimed at ending autocratic monarchy and restoring democracy.


Over 12,000 Nepalese people have been killed since the anti-government insurgency began in the Himalayan kingdom in February 1996.


Commenting on the situation in Afghanistan, Kong also said China will continue to play a positive role in their economic and political reconstruction process.


Kong announced that an international conference on Afghanistan will be held in London from January 31 to February 1. Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing will attend the conference at the invitation of the British and Afghan governments.


Kong said the upcoming conference is of great importance. China has been a constant supporter of Afghan economic and social reconstruction, and has provided Afghanistan with a great deal of assistance in funds, food and material.


China will actively implement personnel training projects in the diplomatic field for Afghanistan, and will continue to encourage Chinese companies to contribute to Afghan economic reconstruction engineering projects, Kong noted.


Following the conference, Li is to visit Switzerland, Austria, Norway, Monaco and France from February 2 to 9.


During his tour, Li will meet in Vienna with his counterparts from Britain, France and Germany.


(Xinhua News Agency January 25, 2006)

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