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Japan, China continue talks on strained ties
Updated: 2006-02-12 14:26

"The efforts to mend soured Sino-Japan ties have begun with Prime Minister Koizumi on the sidelines amid renewed focus on the leadership election of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) in September," the major Japanese newspaper Mainichi Shimbun newspaper commented on Friday.

Because the ruling coalition holds the majority in parliament, the new head of the LDP, of which Koizumi is the incumbent president, would become the next premier.

In a sign the LDP hopes to bridge the gap with Beijing, its policy chief Hidenao Nakagawa plans to visit China from February 19 and former prime minister Ryutaro Hashimoto will go in March, media reports said.

Despite the bilateral friction, China is Japan's largest trading partner, leading much of the Japanese business community to push for an easing of tensions.

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