Japan minister's China remarks 'inappropriate'

08:42, April 25, 2011      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

Japanese Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa's call for stronger military ties with its allies to balance China's growing influence was described as "inappropriate" by a leading analyst.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal on Friday, Kitazawa said "in order to maintain the right balance in our relationship with China, we need to also solidify the ties between Japan, the US and South Korea", adding that Japan was particularly concerned about China's increasing naval capabilities.

He also said Japan's relations with the United States were strengthened by the help its military provided in the aftermath of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, the paper reported on Saturday.

"Our priority is to make our bilateral relationship with the US rock solid," he added.

Kitazawa's comments came after he thanked US forces for their help in the relief efforts.

His remarks on China were "very inappropriate" and could affect relations between Japan and China, said Zhou Yongsheng, a professor of Japan studies at China Foreign Affairs University.

"The Japan-US military alliance, shaped in the Cold War, should not be expanded or aimed at any third party."

China's military growth has never exceeded the necessary amount to maintain national security, Zhou added.

"The expansion of the Japan-US military alliance in the sensitive area of East Asia is harmful to regional peace and stability," Zhou noted.

Kitazawa's comments appear to show a change of attitude in the ruling Democratic Party of Japan, whose previous premier, Yukio Hatoyama, had promised a less subservient relationship with Washington.

Japan-US relations have improved somewhat since Prime Minister Naoto Kan assumed office, but a controversial base on Okinawa, which hosts more than half of the 47,000 US troops stationed in Japan, remains an irritant in ties between the security allies.

Japan's relations with China plunged to their lowest point in years last September after a fishing boat collided with Japanese coastguard ships near China's Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea.

AFP contributed to this story.

Source: China Daily
 
 
     
 
BRICS Leaders  Meeting 2011
 
Japan in  aftershocks
 
     
 
 
 
  Weekly review  
 
April 20   Beijing-Shanghai high-speed rail to remove luxury seats
 
April 18   China undergoing shift into nation of consumers
April 18   Zhejiang checks food, raids illegal bun makers
April 19   SASS: Chinese students mentally healthier than Asian peers
April 23   The week in pictures
April 19   Build legal bulwark against moral decline
April 21   'China model' 30 years on: from home to abroad
April 21   Piano student's bloody crime heart-wrenching in China
April 18   China places firmer lid on home prices
April 19   China puts brake on economic bullet train
 
     
 
 

(Editor:梁军)

  • Do you have anything to say?

双语词典
dictionary

  
Special Coverage
  • BRICS Leaders' Meeting 2011
  • Focus On China
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Breathing toys displayed at 109th Canton Fair
  • 'Energy Shift Parade' held to protest against nuclear policy in Japan
  • Haenyeo, female divers in S. Korea
  • Wedding feast sickens many villiagers in C China
  • Chinese divers shine in Mexico with six golds
  • Higuain's hat-trick helps starter-changed Real Madrid crush Valencia
Most Popular
Hot Forum Dicussion