China on Tuesday (15/8) condemned the ritual offering of Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to the Yasukuni Shrine, which he saw as a symbol of militarism. Beijing called it a “negative move” reflecting Japan’s “historical attitude.”
Kishida sent a religious ornament to the controversial shrine on Tuesday as the country marked the 78th anniversary of its defeat in World War II.
China has lodged a “severe” complaint with Japan, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Wang Wenbin told a daily news briefing.
“Confronting honestly and deeply reflecting on the history of aggression is an important prerequisite for Japan to resume its normal post-war relations with its Asian neighbors,” Wang said.
Many Chinese citizens still harbor hatred for Japanese aggression against China, especially at the beginning of the brutal Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937-1945, when the Rape of Nanking occurred.
Japanese citizens visit Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo, Wednesday, August 15, 2023 to commemorate the 78th anniversary of Japan’s surrender in World War 1945. (Photo: Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP)
Much of China’s ruling Communist Party’s legitimacy is based on its opposition to the occupiers and seeking to use the memory of the conflict as its diplomatic bargaining chip with Tokyo, despite the two countries’ close trade ties.
Asked about the high-level meeting between the United States (US), Japan and South Korea to enhance military cooperation, Wang said China rejects “states concerned forming alliances” and rejects practices that “exacerbate confrontation and harm strategic security of countries.” other.”
“We hope that the countries concerned will follow the trend of the times and do something conducive to the peace, stability and prosperity of the region,” Wang said.
The three countries are expected to announce plans to expand military cooperation in the development of defense and ballistic missile technology amid concerns over North Korea’s nuclear program, when the leaders of the three countries gather at Camp David for a summit on Friday (18/8). , according to two senior US officials. (rd/rs)