China, Japan still in diplomatic row over Diaoyu Islands

08:30, November 01, 2010      

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Tensions between China and Japan remain simmering after the agenda of a regional summit on cooperation was believed to be defocused due to Tokyo's reassertion of sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands, a move that Beijing said jeopardize the atmosphere for an effort at mending ties.

A meeting between Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan at the East Asia Summit in Hanoi, Vietnam, had been widely speculated, but the reported event was allegedly canceled.

Speaking at the day's session of the House of Representatives Security Committee, Japanese Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara noted on Thursday that Japan would not compromise the territorial issue over the Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea, The Mainichi Daily News reported.

Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Hu Zhengyue said Japan ruined the atmosphere for leaders from the two sides to conduct talks and accused the Japanese side of violating China's sovereignty and territorial integrity, according to the Xinhua News Agency.

Wu Huaizhong, a researcher at the Institute of Japanese Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times Sunday that "Beijing's judgment was that Japan has no sincerity in holding high-profile bilateral talks. Japan's recently provocative words and acts have done nothing but damage to the preconditions for any bilateral meeting."

China and Japan have been locked in a diplomatic feud centered on the sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea, sparked by Japan's detention of a Chinese boat captain in September.

Liu Junhong, a researcher with the Institute of Japanese Studies at the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, told the Global Times that Japan's foreign minister has deliberately put China in an embarrassing position and made the summit meaningless.

"On one hand, he used a non-diplomatic word 'hysterical' to describe China's reaction to the Diaoyu Islands issue. On the other, he fabricated lies to say that the two countries had reached a consensus on the East China Sea issue. He has ruined the political atmosphere between leading officials of the two countries prior to their meeting aimed at improving the bilateral relationship and clarifying the importance of strategic reciprocal relations," Liu said.

By Zhu Shanshan, Global Times
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