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Beijing envoy to Tokyo calls for balanced manner

By WANG XU in Tokyo | China Daily | Updated: 2021-05-21 10:24
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Chinese Ambassador to Japan Kong Xuanyou. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Chinese Ambassador to Japan Kong Xuanyou urged Tokyo to handle its relationship with China and the United States in a balanced manner, and should not spark regional rivalries or become entangled in confrontations between major powers.

The remarks were made by Kong in a wide-ranging interview with Japan's Kyodo News on Tuesday, during which he touched on a variety of issues such as the US-Japan alliance, China's Taiwan question, issues related to the Diaoyu Islands, and Japan's handling of contaminated water from Fukushima.

The Chinese embassy in Japan published the transcript on its official website on Wednesday.

"It is in Japan's long-term interest to properly handle Sino-Japanese relations and Japan-US relations,"Kong said, adding Japan should have the political wisdom to handle its relations with major powers in a balanced manner.

"It would be extremely unwise (for Japan) to be involved in a conflict between major powers, or to regard China, its largest cooperative partner, as an opponent or even a threat. It will inevitably hurt Japan's own interests," Kong added.

The interview came amid Japan's rising criticism of China on matters ranging from the South China Sea and China's domestic issues, with the latest one mentioning Taiwan in a leader's summit statement for the first time in more than five decades with the US.

"Japan's words and deeds on issues involving China's internal affairs and core interests have made us feel puzzled and dissatisfied," Kong said,"The Taiwan question is a major one related to China's sovereignty and territorial integrity and China's core interests, which China will never allow external interference."

Kong said Japan's behavior had clearly violated the principles set out in the four political documents between China and Japan, which the two countries agreed. "They are mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, mutual nonaggression, noninterference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence."

On the issue of the Diaoyu Islands, Kong said China had never admitted the islands are "under de facto Japanese control". The two sides should face up to the reality of their different positions and handle the issue properly from a long-term perspective, instead of inciting public opinion and confrontation.

The envoy reiterated that China had stated its stance and concerns many times on the Japanese government's decision to discharge contaminated water from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the sea.

"As a neighboring country, Japan only unilaterally informed China and other countries of its contaminated water discharge decision, but did not conduct necessary consultation and communication with China and other neighboring countries in advance," he said.

Kong said it is common sense that China expressed its strong concern and dissatisfaction with Japan's actions and urged Tokyo to face up to its responsibility, fulfill its international obligations, and respond to the serious concerns of the international community and neighboring countries.

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