In a bid to strengthen their respective diplomatic positions in the international circle, Japan has sent their envoys to the United States capital of Washington while China‘s ambassador has published a scathing article in a top U.S. newspaper. While the U.S. is considered Japan’s closest ally, the former has also been pressuring Tokyo to repair ties with China and South Korea in light of Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe‘s controversial visit to the Yasukuni war shrine.
Abe’s younger brother and vice foreign minister, Nobuo Kishi, was sent to Washington to meet with Deputy Secretary of State William Burns on Wednesday. The U.S. State department’s spokesperson Marie Harf told the media that they are reiterating their position that Japan needs to repair its relations with its neighbours as it will benefit them, the region and even allies like the U.S. She also said they had discussions about other issues concerning their two countries as well. Shotaro Yachi, the newly appointed head of the secretariat of the National Security Council (which was patterned after the U.S.’ National Security Agency) will be travelling to Washington as well later this week.
Meanwhile, China’s ambassador to Washington, Cui Tiankai, also met with Burns earlier this week to discuss “matters of bilateral and regional importance,” according to Harf, without going into any details. A week ago, Cui published a strongly worded op-ed article in the Washington Post, criticizing Abe’s visit of the shrine that honors Japan’s war dead, including convicted Class A war criminals. “The Yasukuni war shrine is ground zero for the unrepentant view of Japan’s wartime aggression,” he wrote.
[ via Yonhap News ]
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