China’s top diplomat Jiechi says new, old China-Japan problems intertwined

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Old problems in China-Japan relations are intertwined with new ones, and the challenges cannot be ignored if the countries wish to have a “healthy” relationship, China’s top diplomat said on Tuesday.

A foreign ministry statement said Yang Jiechi, who spoke with Japanese national security chief Takeo Akiba on the phone, said both nations should “grasp the right direction, uphold win-win cooperation, focus on the long term, enhance security and build mutual trust.”

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Yang, the director of the Central Foreign Affairs Commission Office for China, said both countries should work together to ensure “stable, healthy and resilient” relations in the next 50 years, and “jointly maintain regional peace and prosperity”.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations for China and Japan.

Relations between both nations have grown tense, with Japan scrambling jets after Chinese and Russian warplanes neared its airspace last month as Tokyo hosted leaders of the Quad grouping, and longtime concerns over a Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

Read more: Japan, US fly fighter jets after China drill, North Korea’s missiles

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