Japan to destroy war remnants in China

( NHK )

Japan says that it will set up a special site in Jilin province, on Nov 30, to deal with chemical weapons that it says it left in Northeast China at the end of World War II, the Japan Broadcasting Corp (NHK) reported, on Nov 21.

The site will have to deal with 300,000 to 400, 000 buried weapons that were abandoned by retreating Japanese troops and “the Japanese government has sped up work on facilities where those bombs were excavated”.

According to NHK, “Japan will burn the chemical weapons using a furnace, with plans to complete the work by 2022, with Chinese government agreement. One Japanese expert from Japan’s Abandoned Chemical Weapons Office, operating in the village explained that the furnace will burn the weapons at 500 C.

Abandoned chemical weapons used by the Japanese military in its war with China have reportedly caused injuries and causalities, according to the UK’s Royal Society of Chemistry with the number of Chinese injured around 2,000. A few fatalities were caused after the retreat.

Japan has worked with the Chinese government to destroy the chemical weapons since 2000 with the help from the UN’s Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). There are already two destruction sites, in the cities of Nanjing and Shijiazhang, so, this Jilin Haerbaling site will be the third.

NHK reported that officials from both countries will take part in an opening ceremony. In commenting on the significance of this deconstruction site, Akio Takahara, a Japan security expert, noted, “This is a bold move for dealing with the remnants of the war,” then added that it is also good for Sino-Japanese relations.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held talks at the recent APEC summit with China’s President Xi Jinping to try to relieve tensions between the two countries.

By Wang Zhen