BEIJING, July 14 -- China on Monday criticised controversial remarks by Australia's leader on Japanese aggression during World War II, reminding Australia to remember the profound suffering Japan caused during that period.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, inviting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to deliver a speech at Parliament on Tuesday, showed his admiration for the "skill" Japanese forces performed during World War II.
"We admired the skill and the sense of honor that they brought to their task, although we disagreed with what they did. Perhaps we grasped, even then, that with a change of heart the fiercest of opponents could be the best of friends," the prime minister said.
"Japanese fascist invaders brought profound suffering to people in a number of countries, including Australia, during World War II. Their aggression was extremely brutal," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said.
"If the reports are true, I believe anyone with a conscience will disagree with the remarks made by the Australian leader," Hong said.