Beijing opening avenues for improving China-Japan ties
BEIJING—China on Sunday made requirements on improving bilateral relations and urged Japan to take concrete actions, during Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida’s first official visit amid discord of the two countries.
China-Japan relations went through twists and turns in recent years. Bilateral relations are improving with a fragile foundation. The two countries should keep a grip on the right direction of bilateral relations with a due sense of responsibility, said Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.
Li met with Kishida in downtown Beijing on Saturday afternoon, after Kishida’s talks with Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his meeting with State Councilor Yang Jiechi respectively.
Li said China is willing, in the spirit of taking the history as a mirror and looking into the future, to make joint efforts with Japan to strengthen political mutual trust and promote bilateral relations back to the track of normal development.
He stressed that no ambiguity or vacillation is allowed when it comes to the matters of principle concerning the political foundation for the normalization of China-Japan relations.
The Japanese side should stick to the path of peaceful development, and match deeds with its words that China’s peaceful development is an opportunity, Li said.
He urged Japan to really pursue a positive China policy, adhere to the four political documents between the two countries, and appropriately handle the sensitive elements having fundamental impacts on bilateral relations.
The four documents refer to the China-Japan Joint Statement inked in 1972, the China-Japan Treaty of Peace and Friendship of 1978, the China-Japan Joint Declaration of 1998, and the joint statement on advancing strategic and mutually-beneficial relations in a comprehensive way signed in 2008.
Premier Li said Japan should create a favorable atmosphere for the gradual resumption of bilateral dialogue and cooperation mechanism and the trilateral summit among China, Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK), and help improve the sentiment of people of each other and enhance people-to-people exchanges.
China, Japan and the ROK restarted the trilateral leaders’ meeting in last November, ending a period of diplomatic deadlock due to heightened regional tensions. The three countries take turns to host the meeting and this year the chair goes to Japan. Li also called on the two countries to strengthen cooperation in all areas to benefit the two peoples.
Kishida said the Japanese side, in the spirit of the four political documents, is willing to adhere to the consensus with China that the two countries are each other’s cooperative partner rather than threats.
He said Japan is willing to pay mutual respect, strengthen mutual trust, control disputes, and advance the bilateral relations initiated by elder leaders of the two countries and build a Japan-China relations facing toward the future.
Kishida spoke highly of China’s economic structural reform and voiced willingness for further comprehensive cooperation with China. During the talks with Kishida on Saturday morning, Foreign Minister Wang Yi made a four-point requirement on improving China-Japan ties.
Firstly, in politics, Japan should stick fast to the four political documents between the two countries, face up to and reflect upon history and follow the one-China policy to the letter, Wang said.
No ambiguity or vacillation is allowed when it comes to this important political foundation of bilateral ties, he stressed. Secondly, in terms of its outlook on China, Japan should translate into concrete actions its consensus with China that the two countries are cooperative partners rather than a threat to each other, according to Wang.—Xinhua