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China Daily Website

Japan 'should not deny history'

Updated: 2012-11-05 08:03
By Zhang Chunyan in London ( China Daily)

Chinese diplomats in Europe asked Japan not to deny history, as Chinese ships continued to conduct regular patrols during the weekend to defend China's sovereignty over the Diaoyu islands.

Four Chinese marine surveillance ships patrolled waters off the Diaoyu Islands on Sunday, according to a statement from the State Oceanic Administration.

The patrol team, composed of the Haijian 50, Haijian 15, Haijian 26 and Haijian 27, entered the waters to carry out their regular duty of defending China's sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands, the statement said. The patrols were also conducted on Saturday.

Chinese ambassador to the UK said Japan should take a hard look at its attitude and learn from postwar Germany.

"Many historians have compared postwar Japan and Germany," Ambassador Liu Xiaoming said in an article published on Nov 2 in the Financial Times. "Their conclusions are consistent: Unlike Germany, Japan has never seriously reflected on its behavior during World War II."

He cited the BBC broadcast, The Nazis: A Warning from History, a documentary about World War II and said: "Its message is timeless: All humanity should be on guard to prevent the rise of military fascism."

Despite such warnings, war criminals are still worshipped at the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo, Liu said. Senior Japanese officials often pay tribute to the shrine, Liu said, adding that "Japan's leaders have occasionally offered grudging apologies, but these have never convinced its neighbors".

"Worshipping war criminals is serious, while unjust territorial claims are dangerous," he said, referring to Japan's illegal "purchase" of the Diaoyu Islands, which belong to China.

Abundant historical records show that the islands have been an integral part of China's territory for centuries, he added.

Saying the recent tension between China and Japan is the result of the Japanese government's illegal "purchase" of the islands, Liu said: "The friction has been caused solely by Japan. China has made clear its position and expressed concerns to Japan on many levels, but Japan is intransigent."

Japan should learn from Europe, postwar Germany in particular, he said.

Xinhua contributed to this story.