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Experts highlight Deng's strategy in handling territorial dispute


08:30, September 14, 2012

TIANJIN, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese and Japanese governments should set their disputes aside in the manner proposed by late leader Deng Xiaoping while tackling tensions concerning the Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea, experts said at the ongoing Summer Davos forum being held in north China's city of Tianjin.

The Japanese cabinet on Monday announced a decision to purchase part of the Diaoyu Islands from the Kurihara family, despite repeated objections from China.

The move has resulted in extensive protests in China calling for the revocation of the deal.

Professor Chung-in Moon from Seoul's Yonsei University said Deng's guidelines are still applicable now, adding that both sides must calm down before they can find a peaceful solution.

Both sides agreed in 1978 to put the issue aside and solve it in the future, using a guideline described as "laying aside disputes and engaging in joint exploitation" to solve territorial issues with neighboring countries.

Although Japan's national government previously kept the situation stable by preventing the local government from taking action, the country cannot afford to fight with China about the issue, as China is the country's biggest trade partner, said Yoichi Funabashi, chairman of the Rebuild Japan Initiative Foundation, a Tokyo think tank.

Professor Meng Wan from the Beijing Foreign Studies University's Law School said both sides should cool their dispute and focus on regional cooperation and economic integration.

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