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|Friday, September 28, 2001, updated at 08:49(GMT+8)|
China Urges Japan to be "Prudent" in Aiding Fight against TerrorismChina Thursday urged Japan to be "prudent" in the kind of help it would provide to the global fight against terrorism following reports Tokyo might be willing to expand its military role overseas.
The issue of Japan taking military action was a "very sensitive" one due to the country's history, said Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhu Bangzao.
"In the fight against terrorism, the international community faces a common task," he said at the ministry's regular briefing.
"On the other hand ... due to historical reasons, it's quite obvious that the role that the Japanese government can play in the military field is a very sensitive question and should be dealt with in a prudent manner."
China was a main victim of Japanese imperialism in the years before and during World War II. Japanese soldiers waged a brutal full-scale war in China in the period from 1937 to 1945, during which millions of Chinese soldiers and civilians were killed.
Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi on Thursday promised Japan would provide non-combat assistance such as medical treatment, transport and supplies.
But Japan would not contravene its constitution, which bars the use of force to settle international disputes, Koizumi said.
However, during the current Japanese parliamentary session MPs are expected to pass a new law allowing an expanded role for the country's military in the US-led war on terrorism, news reports have said.
The special law, to be named after the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington DC, will allow Japan's military to transport ammunition and weapons to US forces, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun business daily said Thursday.
The law would allow the overseas mobilisation of the Japanese military -- known as the Self-Defense Forces -- for such tasks without a UN resolution, the paper said.
Koizumi has previously said he was ready to send Japanese forces on non-combat missions to help Americans, even if those missions were dangerous.
Recent polls have shown as many as 87 percent of Japanese support cooperation with the United States in its fight against global terrorism.
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