Japanese FM kicks off China visit
Japanese Foreign Minister Kawaguchi Yoriko arrived in Beijing Saturday noon for a 25-hour visit.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao is expected to meet with her Saturday afternoon. Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing, Kawaguchi's Chinese host, will hold official talks with Kawaguchi and her delegation.
Chinese State Councilor Tang Jiaxuan will meet with Kawaguchi Sunday before her departure.
Amidst a number of disputes and clashes, the visit is described as "tough" by Japanese media.
History issue and the dispute on the Diaoyu Islands, a piece of Chinese territory, will definitely be brought in the talks between the two sides.
Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi Junichiro's repeated visits to the Yasukuni Shrine enraged Chinese and other Asian people deeply hurt by Japanese militarists during the World War II. The shrine honors convicted Japanese Class-A war criminals.
The Japanese leaders' visits to the shrine are a reflection of the Japanese government's stance and attitude towards the war, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Kong Quan told a regular press conference on Thursday.
In regard to the Diaoyu Islands issue, Kong said the Diaoyu Island and the attached islets have been a part of the Chinese territory since ancient times and China has indisputable sovereignty over these islands.
China and Japan have differences on the Diaoyu Islands issue, and China has insisted on solving it through peaceful negotiations, Kong said.
As two major countries in Asia, China and Japan have enjoyed long-term friendship and the two countries have a lot in common in many issues, said Kong.
"Bilateral cooperation will contribute to the benefits of the two peoples and the promotion of peace and stability in the region, " he said.