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Foreign Minister on Sino-Japanese Relationship

Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing said Tuesday that friendly coexistence and win-win cooperation between China and Japan are the only correct choice in serving the fundamental interests of the two peoples.

Li made the remarks in his report on Sino-Japanese relations to an audience of 3,500 people, including officials from six ministries and the military.


According to Li, during the past 2,000-plus year, Chinese and Japanese have friendly exchanges. Ancient Chinese civilization pushed forward the formation and progress of the Japanese culture while China learned a lot from Japan in contemporary period.


"Between the 1894 Sino-Japanese War and WWII, Japan's militarists brutally invaded in China and brought severe disaster to the Chinese people for half a century," he said.


After briefly reviewing the growth of Sino-Japanese ties, Li said that the Sino-Japanese relations have scored great progress in political, economic, cultural, educational and non-governmental contacts after the two countries normalized diplomatic relations in 1972, bringing important interests to the two countries and peoples and playing positive role in peace and development in the region and the world at large.


In recent years, the negative sides of Japan's policy toward China have gradually emerged. "Its wrong attitude and doing in a number of issues, including the history issue, deeply hurt the national feeling of the Chinese people and brought complexity to Sino-Japanese relations," he said, adding that it also aroused strong displeasure of peoples in Asian countries, including China.


According to Li, Japan is an important neighboring country of China. The interests of the two countries have been intertwined with ever frequent communication and contacts among the people. "Such a trend will be further developed in the context of economic globalization," he said.


The improvement and development of Sino-Japanese relations require "a correct view of history," he said, calling for Japan to "turn its promises into action," and properly and thoroughly resolve relevant issues.


He reiterated that the Taiwan issue is a matter concerning China's core interests, China's sovereignty and territorial integrity and the national feeling of the 1.3 billion Chinese people. The adherence to the one-China principle forms the political foundation of China-Japan ties. "Japan should honor its commitments and do nothing detrimental to China's sovereignty," he said.


The Chinese people brace friendly feelings toward the Japanese people, he said. While fully inheriting the good-neighborly and friendly policy toward Japan as initiated by the Chinese leaders of old generations, the new Chinese leadership has time and again stressed that China and Japan should coexist peacefully, develop friendship for generations to come, carry out mutually beneficial cooperation and seek common development.


He also urged the people to express their feelings in a lawful and orderly way and not participate in unapproved demonstrations or activities that may affect social stability.


(Xinhua News Agency April 20, 2005)

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