Japan calls for ‘constructive’ ties with China on 50th anniversary

Tokyo, Sep 29 (EFE).- Japan’s prime minister called Thursday for “constructive” ties with China on the 50th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic ties between both nations.

Fumio Kishida said China and Japan have the “responsibility for peace and prosperity in the region,” local news agency Kyodo reported.

China and Japan must maintain “constructive and stable” relations, he added in a message read out in an event organized by the Japanese Business Federation or Keidanren in Tokyo to commemorate the occasion.

Japan’s leader also highlighted the various possibilities and challenges that bilateral relations entailed and called for neighboring countries to build a new future together.

On Sep. 29, 1972, then Japanese Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka and his Chinese counterpart Zhou Enlai signed a joint declaration in Beijing in which both governments agreed to “establish relations of perpetual peace and friendship.”

Tokyo formally recognized the government of the People’s Republic of China led by the Chinese Communist Party as the “sole legal government” of the country and cut off ties with the self-governed Republic of China as Taiwan is formally called.

Since, there have been several ups and downs in bilateral relations, which have deteriorated in recent years on account of, among other things, Japan’s security alliance with the United States.

The United States has adopted a tougher stance against the country’s military rise in the region with recent episodes of tension including the Taiwan Strait crisis.

The Senkaku Islands, controlled by Tokyo but claimed by Beijing, which calls them Diaoyu, are another reason for frequent friction between the countries, as well as continuous incursions by Chinese ships in Japanese territorial waters around these uninhabited islets.

The ceremony held Thursday in Tokyo was attended by Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi and Kong Xuanyou, China’s ambassador to Japan.

Both countries have been trying to organize a summit between their leaders since before the coronavirus pandemic.

If held in the coming months, it would be the first between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Kishida, who came to office in October. EFE


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