Tokyo asks Beijing for transparency over alleged Japanese spy case

Tokyo, Apr 3 (EFE).- Japan asked China for “transparency” over the legal process faced by one of its citizens detained in the country and accused of espionage, Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi said Monday after meeting with his Chinese counterpart.

“We have asked China to ensure transparency in the legal process in China through various ways and we will continue to do so,” Hayashi said during a parliamentary session Monday after he returned from his visit to China.

The foreign minister said “the protection of Japanese people abroad is one of the most important responsibilities of the government” and vowed to “continue to strengthen” this protection.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida also said during the same parliamentary session that the detained person should be returned “as soon as possible” and promised to continue helping their family.

The reaction comes after Hayashi’s two-day visit to Beijing, the first by a Japanese foreign minister to China since December 2019. It was marked by the arrest last month of a Japanese pharmaceutical executive working for Astellas Pharma, which Beijing accuses of espionage.

Hayashi met with his Chinese counterpart, Qin Gang, who told him there are “both opportunities and challenges in China-Japan relations.”

Qin also said peaceful coexistence and friendly cooperation are the “only right choice” for relations between the two nations, with territorial and historical conflicts yet to be resolved.

The Chinese minister said he hopes Japan will “establish a correct understanding” of China and succeed in “removing obstacles and reducing burdens for bilateral relations.”

Japan said it positively valued this visit as a first step for “a constructive and stable relationship and cooperation and resolution of common problems between the two countries,” adding that China should act “responsibly,” Japanese Government Spokesman Hirokazu Matsuno said Monday at a press conference. EFE


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