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China opposes Japan's latest defense white paper

(Xinhua)

14:07, August 05, 2011

China's Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry have expressed strong opposition to Japan's 2011 defense white paper, saying that it contains "irresponsible" comments regarding the development of China's national defense.

The white paper, released on Tuesday, expressed concerns over China's military buildup, as well as the country's increasing defense budget. The paper also described China's method of managing its relations with neighboring countries, including Japan, as "assertive."

Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu expressed "strong dissatisfaction" with the white paper on Thursday, saying that it contains "irresponsible comments regarding China's national defense construction."

Defense Ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng on Thursday also expressed strong opposition to the document on Thursday, saying that it plays up a "China threat theory" and reflects Japan's "ulterior motives."

According to Wang Shan, an expert from the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, "China's maritime threat" is an important part of the white paper's "China threat theory."

"Disputes still remain on issues regarding the South China Sea. However, China opposes attempts to internationalize the South China Sea disputes, as these attempts could jeopardize peace and stability in the region," said Wang.

"The white paper also mentions 'high pressure',which means the oppression of one party against another in the context of hegemony," said Gao Hong, deputy director of Japanese Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

China has no intention of seeking confrontation with neighboring countries. Such remarks are entirely irresponsible. said Gao.

China expounded on its "peaceful development road" concept in a white paper issued in 2005, stating that "China is now taking the road of peaceful development and will continue to do so as it becomes stronger in the future."

Yang Bojiang, a professor at the University of International Relations, noted that the Japanese side shows uneasiness about China's military presence in the surrounding waters.

"China's actions have not violated international law," said Yang. adding that their uneasiness mainly comes from their failure to mentally adapt to China's growth.

According to Wang, China should express its own ideas and keep a clear eye on the "political conspiracy" reflected by the white paper.

Japan's 2011 defense white paper also underlines the U.S.-Japan alliance, a move that has provoked criticism from academics.

"Japan wishes to check China's development through the U.S.-Japan alliance. Yet this alliance itself has put great pressure on Asian countries," said Lu Yaodong, a professor of Japanese studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

"We hope that Japan will stop actions that impair regional peace and development," said Lu.

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