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Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi Refutes Japan's Distorted Accounts on Diaoyu Dao Issue at the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Summit
2012/11/06

On the afternoon of November 6, 2012, Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi refuted Japan's distorted accounts on the Diaoyu Islands issue at the fourth plenary session of the ninth Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Summit in Vientiane, Laos. Japan, regardless of the summit's theme of cooperation and the wishes of the majority of the members, intentionally distorted facts about the issue of the Diaoyu Islands, a group of islets in the East China Sea which belong to China.

In response, Yang expounded on the history and facts of the Diaoyu Islands and stated the solemn positions of the Chinese government on the issue to the representatives of the participating countries. The Diaoyu Island and its affiliated islets have been China's sacred territory since ancient times, and have been put under China's effective jurisdiction for a long time, Yang said. In 1895, Japan illegally occupied the Diaoyu Islands following the Qing government's defeat in the First Sino-Japanese War and forced the Qing government to sign an unequal treaty, which ceded to Japan the islands and other territories, he said. After the end of the Second World War, the Diaoyu Islands and other islets invaded and occupied by Japan have already been returned to China according to the Cairo Declaration and the Potsdam Proclamation, Yang said. The unilateral island-buying move by the Japanese government, along with other provocations, have gravely infringed on China's territorial sovereignty, he said. Japan's position on the issue is also an outright denial of the outcomes of the victory of the World Anti-Fascist War and constitutes a grave challenge to the post-war international order as well as the purposes and principles of the UN charter, he said. The Chinese government, he said, stands firm to safeguard its territorial sovereignty, urging the Japanese side to stop immediately all the acts which would damage China's territorial sovereignty, to correct its mistakes with real actions and to make genuine efforts to properly handle the current situation.

Yang noted that the ASEM summit is a platform where countries from Asia and Europe seek to conduct mutually-beneficial cooperation and work for common development. Japan, regardless of the bigger picture of the Asia-Europe cooperation, intentionally provokes the Diaoyu Islands issue at the meeting. Such a move is totally unpopular and doomed to fail, Yang said.

 
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