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Spokesman urges Japan to return to dialogue on Diaoyu Islands


08:39, June 05, 2013

BEIJING, June 4 (Xinhua) -- A spokesman for China's Foreign Ministry Tuesday expressed China's demand that Japan return to the track of managing and resolving disputes over the Diaoyu Islands at an early date.

It is an historical fact that China and Japan had reached important understanding and consensus on shelving the issue of the Diaoyu Islands for a future resolution, spokesman Hong Lei told a regular press briefing.

Hong made the remarks in response to a question about a comment made by Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga.

Yoshihide said at a news conference held in Tokyo Tuesday that Japan has never agreed with China on shelving the dispute over the Diaoyu Islands.

Hong said that during their talks on the normalization of bilateral relations and the signing of the China-Japan Treaty of Peace and Friendship, the older generation of leaders of the two countries proceeded from the general situation and explicitly expressed that they would shelve the issue of the Diaoyu Islands for future resolution and reached important understanding and consensus on this.

"This is an historical fact," Hong said.

He said that what the Japanese side has done since last year violated that important understanding and consensus and has resulted in the current tensions over the Diaoyu Islands.

"The Chinese side demands that the Japanese side squarely face history, respect the facts and listen to the voice of people within Japan, including former Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiromu Nonaka," Hong said.

Nonaka is currently leading a delegation of incumbent and former Japanese lawmakers to visit China.

During a meeting with Liu Yunshan, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, in Beijing on Monday, Nonaka said Japanese and Chinese leaders reached an agreement on shelving the dispute over the Diaoyu Islands after the two countries normalized relations 41 years ago.

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