السبت , يونيو 6 2020

China and Japan hold security talks

China's Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Liu Jianchao (2nd R), Japan's Foreign Deputy Minister Shinsuke Sugiyama (2nd L), and other government officials from both sides shake hands prior to the 13th round of Japan-China Security Dialogue at the Foreign Ministry in Tokyo on March 19, 2015.Chinese and Japanese officials shook hands at the start of the meeting in Tokyo

China and Japan are holding their first high-level security talks in four years, following recent tensions over territorial and historical issues.

The meeting in Tokyo among officials comes ahead of trilateral talks with South Korea on Saturday.

The last round of talks was in 2011, before ties worsened over a row over islands in the East China Sea.

China also claims Japan has failed to adequately atone for aggression in World War Two.

But the BBC’s Celia Hatton in Beijing says relations are slowly improving and at the top of the meeting’s agenda is the establishment of a maritime communication hotline.

There have been fears that a clash – accidental or otherwise – between Chinese and Japanese paramilitary vessels patrolling waters around the disputed islands, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, could trigger a conflict.

Japan’s deputy foreign minister told reporters that both sides hoped to “especially discuss intentions and thoughts behind each other’s defence policy.”

His counterpart, China’s Assistant Foreign Minister Liu Jianchao, said that China hoped that the two countries “would develop a mind to face history squarely and look into the future”.

line
The disputed islands


Japanese Maritime Self-Defence Force ship and flag

Please turn on JavaScript. Media requires JavaScript to play.

Rupert Wingfield-Hayes looks at the dispute over the islands

  • The eight uninhabited islands and rocks have a total area of about 7 sq km
  • They are close to strategically important shipping lanes – the waters also offer rich fishing grounds and are thought to contain oil deposits
  • The islands are controlled by Japan
  • China says they have been part of its territory since ancient times
  • Separately, Taiwan also claims the islands

QA: China-Japan islands row

line

Thursday’s meeting is seen as a continuation of work to improve ties in recent months.

In November, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation summit in Beijing, where world media captured the two leaders frostily shaking hands.

The two sides agreed then to set up a maritime crisis mechanism.

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping (R), during their meeting at the Great Hall of the PeopleMr Abe and Mr Xi met on the sidelines of the Apec meeting in November

Besides territorial concerns, China has also taken issue with Japan’s defence policy changes under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Japan has defended its reinterpretation of its pacifist constitution to allow it to use force to defend allies under attack, which it calls “collective self-defence”. China in turn has previously accused Japan of “remilitarising”.

China, along with South Korea, has also accused Japan of whitewashing wartime atrocities in schoolbooks and raised objections when ministers, including Mr Abe, visited the controversial Yasukuni shrine which honours Japan’s war dead as well as war criminals.

شاهد أيضاً

COPTIC SOLIDARITY LAUNCHES URGENT CALL TO END CRIME OF FORCED DISAPPEARANCE OF COPTIC WOMEN IN EGYPT

A Coptic woman, Ranya Abd al-Masih (“servant of Christ”), 39, disappeared in Egypt on April 22, 2020, …