There is a current effort in China to designate formal national days for commemorating Japan’s defeat in World War II and the Nanjing Massacre, this according to the state-run Chinese media on Tuesday. This will surely not sit well with Tokyo, as both sides have not been doing well in managing the bitter historical and territorial disputes between the two Asian neighbors.
According to China’s official media outfit Xinhua news agency, the Chinese National People’s Congress is now mulling setting the date September 3 of every year as “Victory Day of the Chinese People’s War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression.” Citing statements from the Chinese legislature, Xinhua also reports that lawmakers are also considering designating December 13 as a “national memorial day to commemorate those killed by Japanese aggressors during the Nanjing Massacre in the 1930s.” In both these proposals, the impending decision is set to be debated during bi-monthly sessions of the Chinese legislative branch’s standing committee starting on Tuesday. There is no published version of the proposals, and the NPC’s website still has not shown any of this information, which comes amid a time when bilateral ties between China and Japan have been on the decline.
China points indirectly to the claim that 20.6 million Chinese citizens died as a direct result of Japan’s invasion and occupation of its territory. The Nanjing Massacre is also one of the historical thorns between the neighboring Asian countries. It can be noted that there has been intensifying criticism of Tokyo in state-controlled media as the territorial and historical disputes worsen. Just recently, a group of Chinese citizens have come out saying that they want to sue Japanese companies for forced labor during the Second World War. If the Chinese courts begin to accept these kinds of lawsuits when in the past they have not, it will mark a new low in the relationship between Tokyo and Beijing.