Premier Wen Jiabao said Wednesday he hopes his upcoming visit to Japan will be a success and help "melt the ice" in China-Japan relations.
"I hope to reach consensus with Japanese leaders on major bilateral issues and improve relations between the two countries," Premier Wen Jiabao said while giving an interview to 16 Japanese news organizations.
China and Japan had enjoyed a friendly history for more than 2,000 years, and this had exerted a deep influence on the world, said Wen in the interview, which came ahead of his Japan tour slated for April 11-13.
However, the two countries also had 50 years of bad blood, Wen said, adding that the war launched on China by Japanese militarists 70 years ago had not only brought catastrophe to the Chinese but also harmed the Japanese.
He called on the two countries to look into the mirror of history and also look forward to the future.
"Looking into the mirror of history means learning lessons from history, while looking forward to the future means exploring new paths in China-Japan friendly cooperation," said Wen.
The premier said he hoped to have ample contact with Japanese people so that he could learn more about Japan.
He also hoped Japanese would learn more about China so as to enhance mutual trust and friendship, Wen said.
Developing China-Japan ties is in line with the people's will and with the trend of world events, said the premier.
"We Chinese want to join hands with Japanese people to improve bilateral ties," said the premier.
Wen's visit is the first to Japan by a Chinese premier in seven years, according to China's Foreign Ministry.
He will meet with Japanese leaders and deliver a speech at the Diet of Japan. The three-day tour will also take Wen to Kyoto, where he will visit a university.
Wen will visit South Korea before arriving in Japan.
(Xinhua News Agency April 5, 2007)