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Hu-Koizumi summit hangs in the balance
(China Daily)
Updated: 2005-04-21 23:53

China and Japan are "still in the process of consultation" over a proposed meeting between President Hu Jintao and Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi during the Asia-Africa summit in Jakarta.

FM spokesman Qin Gang gestures at the FM press conference on April 21, 2005. [www.fmprc.gov.cn]
Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang made the announcement at a press conference yesterday, adding: "We will make the announcement when we have the information."

Commenting on the widespread protests over Japan's militaristic past over the past weeks, a spokesman for the Ministry of Public Security said yesterday that the demonstrations had been fired by Japan's bad attitude and poorly judged actions on a number of issues, including the history issue.

Japan's activities have deeply hurt the national feeling of the Chinese people and complicated Sino-Japanese ties, he added.

However, the public security departments have adopted intensive measures to safeguard Japanese interests and personnel, said the spokesman.

The patriotism of the demonstrators was understandable, he said, but

those who robbed and destroyed private and public property should be punished accordingly.

The ministry warned that all protests and parades need approval from public security organs before they can go ahead.

Without approval, protests and parades organized on the Internet and through mobile phone messaging break Chinese law.

On Wednesday, Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said he would adhere to the spirit of the "Murayama Statement" and make efforts to improve relations with China, Xinhua reported.

"I have carried out diplomacy with an emphasis on Japan-China relations," said Koizumi, adding that he shares the view of the "Murayama Statement" over historical issues.

The statement was made by former Japanese Prime Minister Tomiichi Murayama on August 15, 1995 to mark the 50th anniversary of the end of the World War II.

In that statement, Murayama said: "During a certain period in the not too distant past, Japan, through its colonial rule and aggression, caused tremendous damage and suffering to the people of many countries, particularly to those of Asian nations."

Murayama also made a clear apology for Japanese crimes before and during the war and expressed deep remorse and stressed the need for Japan to "convey to younger generations the horror of war" so that it will never repeat the mistake.

Answering an inquiry about an on-going speech tour by a group of former Chinese diplomats, Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin said the aim of the tour is to help the public better understand the international situation and the China-Japan relations.

The speech tour, launched by the Publicity Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, started on April 19 and will last six days with stopovers in Tianjin, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Chengdu and Beijing, Xinhua reported.

Wu Jianmin, president of China Foreign Affairs University, said in his report in Tianjin that the negative sides of Japan's policy toward China in recent years have gradually emerged.

Wu also urged people to express their feelings in a lawful and orderly way and not to participate in unapproved demonstrations or activities that may affect social stability.

In another development, Kyuhei Muraoka, director general of the Japan-China Friendship Association, said the current stalemate in relations between the two countries should largely be blamed on the Japanese Government's failure to properly deal with historical problems, Xinhua reported yesterday.

The association urged the Japanese Government to take a correct attitude toward the country's historical issues and appealed to Japanese leaders and the ruling party to stop practices that have led to mistrust between the neighboring countries.

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