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Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing Holds Talks with His Japanese Counterpart Nobutaka Machimura

On the evening of April 17, 2005, Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing held talks with his Japanese counterpart Nobutaka Machimura.

Li said that the Chinese government and people always attach great importance to developing China-Japan friendly cooperative relations and hope both sides follow the principles of "taking history as a mirror and looking into the future" to seek peaceful coexistence, friendship from generation to generation, mutually-beneficial cooperation and common development in accordance with the three political documents reached between the two countries. It is not only in the long-term interest of both countries but also conducive to world peace, stability and development.

Li pointed out that to improve and develop China-Japan relations the first step is to get a correct understanding of history. He expressed hope that Japan could fulfill its commitment to facing and reflecting on its history of aggression with tangible actions, refrain from doing anything else hurting the feeling of the Chinese people and properly address related issues.

Li noted that the Taiwan question is closely related with China's core interest and the national feeling of the 1.3 billion of Chinese population. To adhere to the one-China principle is the political foundation of China-Japan relations. It is the strong requirement of China that Japan should fulfill its commitment and do nothing damaging the national sovereignty of China.

Nobutaka said that the Japanese government is wiling to follow the principles of "taking history as a mirror and looking into the future" and take into account the overall situation of bilateral relations to develop Japan-China friendship. Japan thinks highly of the three principles and three proposals raised by Premier Wen Jiabao at the press conference during the sessions of the National People's Congress (NPC) of China and the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and stands ready to work with China to improve and develop bilateral relations.

In the modern history Japanese aggression against China inflicted great sufferings on the Chinese people, to which Nobutaka expressed deep grief. He once more said that he would reflect on the history and expressed apology. Japan would sincerely learn lessons from history and continue to follow the road of peaceful development. On the Taiwan question, Nobutaka reiterated that Japan adheres to the one-China principle and does not support the "two Chinas", "one China, one Taiwan" or "Taiwan independence".

The two leaders held unanimously that China-Japan relations are highly important to both sides. They agreed to understand and handle bilateral relations from the long-term strategic perspectives and make joint efforts to promote world peace and development. China and Japan will not threat each other, try to solve differences through dialogue, actively seek and expand common interest and continue to strengthen exchanges and cooperation at all levels and in every field.

Li also solemnly required the Japanese government to adopt effective measures to ensure the safety of Chinese organizations and citizens in Japan.

Both sides also exchanged opinions on the international and regional issues of common interest.

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