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China, Japan ministers to meet during APEC
November 8, 2014, 4:57 am

China has blamed Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe's "hard-line behaviour" on territorial disputes for the chill [s-abe.or.jp]

China has blamed Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe’s “hard-line behaviour” on territorial disputes for the chill [s-abe.or.jp]

In a possible first step towards easing tensions, Chinese government ministers will meet with their Japanese counterparts during the APEC Summit in Beijing, after both sides agreed to acknowledge rival territorial claims in the East China Sea.

China’s top diplomat and State Councilor Yang Jiechi met with visiting National Security Advisor of Japan Shotaro Yachi on Friday which led to the crucial breakthrough.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Commerce Minister Gao Hucheng will meet with their Japanese counterparts Fumio Kishida and Yoichi Miyazawa on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Beijing on Monday and Tuesday, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman has confirmed.

Qin Gang told reporters on Friday that the meetings were scheduled at the request of the Japanese side.

“We hope that the Japanese side can continue to make efforts to meet China halfway and take concrete actions to improve the bilateral ties, so as to create an enabling environment for the contact of the leaders of the two countries,” he said.

China has blamed Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe’s “hard-line behaviour” on territorial disputes for the chill.

An official “four-point agreement” on Friday was agreed upon said Chinese state media.

“The two sides have acknowledged that different positions exist between them regarding the tensions which have emerged in recent years over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands and some waters in the East China Sea,” said the agreement quoted by Chinese state media.

“The two sides have agreed to gradually resume political, diplomatic and security dialogue through various multilateral and bilateral channels and to make efforts to build political mutual trust,” it added.

The two sides have agreed to “establish crisis management mechanisms to avoid contingencies”, a Chinese Foreign Ministry statement said.

China is Japan’s largest trading partner for the past several years but the strain in ties has taken a toll on bilateral trade between the world’s second and third largest economies.

Although, Abe has publicly reiterated his request for a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Chinese officials are yet to confirm if a meeting between the top leaders will take place next week.

 

TBP and Agencies

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