China hopes that the Japanese government would adopt a responsible attitude towards history and educate its young people with the correct version of history.
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue made this remark at the regular ministry press conference in Beijing Tuesday.
It has been reported that the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology approved a history textbook last year which omitted the accurate number of war victims who were slaughtered during the Nanjing Massacre on December 13, 1937. The text which said "the estimated number of victims ranged from tens of thousands to 400,000" was changed to "many Chinese were killed" by the intruding Japanese Imperial Army troops.
The textbook is due to be published in April and used by middle school students in Japan.
The Nanjing Massacre, she noted, was a fully proven atrocity committed by Japanese militarists during Japan's War of Aggression against China.
Any attempt to distort or sanitize its history of aggression would be futile, Zhang said.
The crux of matter with regard to the textbook issue was whether Japan was prepared to correctly view its past history of aggression, the spokeswoman said.
About 300,000 Chinese civilians and disarmed prisoners of war were massacred when Japanese troops embarked on an orgy of destruction, pillage, rape and murder after taking the eastern booming Chinese city of Nanjing, one of the worst atrocities in human history.
(Xinhua News Agency February 12, 2003)