CHINA / National

China, Japan to hold security talks in Beijing
Updated: 2006-07-20 10:33

Japan and China will hold working-level security talks in Beijing this week, Japan's Foreign Ministry said Wednesday.

Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Tsuneo Nishida will discuss regional security and defense with his Chinese counterpart Wu Dawei on Friday, the ministry said in a statement. Defense officials from both sides were also slated to attend.

The ministry also said Japanese and Chinese officials plan to discuss U.N. reform at a separate meeting on Thursday in Beijing.

North Korea's recent missile tests are not on the agenda for either meeting, Foreign Ministry Press Secretary Yoshinori Katori told reporters Wednesday, although he didn't rule out an informal discussion of the issue.

The talks come amid rocky relations between Japan and China.

The two disagreed over how to respond to the North Korean missile launches earlier this month, with Beijing accusing Tokyo of overreacting.

They are also at odds over interpretations of Japan's wartime conquest of China and Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's repeated visits to a Tokyo war shrine critics say glorifies Japan's past militarism.

China has refused to hold top-level talks since Koizumi's last visit to the shrine in October last year.

China and Japan have held nine security meetings since 1993, the last in Tokyo in February 2004, according to the statement.