China values defense ties with Japan
Updated: 2011-12-28 20:01
BEIJING - China has always valued defense relations with Japan and is willing to conduct multi-level defense exchanges with the country, a Defense Ministry spokesman said here on Wednesday.
Spokesman Yang Yujun made the remarks at a press briefing in response to a question on a Japanese destroyer's port call in China.
According to the annual plan of China-Japan defense exchanges, the Kirisame, a Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force(MSDF) destroyer, made a port call in Qingdao, Shandong province, from December 19 to 23, Yang said.
During the port call, the ship's commander Fumiyuki Kitagawa went to Beijing to meet the Deputy Commander of the Chinese Navy Xu Hongmeng, Yang said.
A welcoming ceremony for the Japanese vessel was held in Qingdao, while the Chinese naval staff paid a visit to the destroyer, Yang said.
Naval staffers from both sides participated in friendship events such as a tug-of-war competition and a joint concert of Japanese and Chinese naval bands, he said, noting that they also conducted a joint communications drill.
Kirisame's port call in China is of positive significance for increasing mutual understanding and trust and promoting bilateral defense exchanges, Yang said.
Mutual port calls were agreed upon by the two countries' defense ministers in August 2007.
A Japanese destroyer visited a port in Zhanjiang in Guangdong province in June 2008 in the first ever visit of its kind.
Yang said China has always attached importance to bilateral defense relations and is willing to make joint efforts with Japan to enhance mutual understanding and trust.
Regarding a question on Japan's decision to ease its ban on arms exports, Yang said he hopes the Japanese side will do more to contribute to regional peace and stability.