Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei’s Regular Press Conference on April 21, 2015
At the invitation of President Xi Jinping, President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea will pay a state visit to China from April 27 to May 2.
At the invitation of Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Paolo Gentiloni, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Italy, will pay an official visit to China from April 27 to 29. Foreign Minister Wang Yi will preside over the 6th joint meeting of the China-Italy Governmental Committee with Minister Gentiloni during the latter’s stay in China.
Q: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reportedly said on April 20 that he would succeed previous cabinets’ basic way of thinking on the history issue in his statement on the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII. However, he would not repeat what his predecessors have said before, as that would make it unnecessary to issue a new statement. What is China’s comment on that?
A: We have noted the remarks made by the Japanese leader. I would like to reiterate that in such an important and sensitive year that marks the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII, the statements made and messages sent by the Japanese leader to the outside world on the history issue not only affect the process of reconciliation between Japan and its Asian neighbors, but also help the international community detect whether Japan sticks to the path of peaceful development. It is hoped that the Japanese side will take heed of the call for justice from across the world and within Japan, honor previous Japanese cabinets’ statements on and commitments to facing squarely and reflecting upon the history of aggression, show sincerity, make a break with the past and open up to the future.
Q: Japanese Prime Minister Abe sent a “masakaki” tree as a ritual offering to the Yasukuni Shrine on April 21. What is China’s comment on that?
A: The Chinese side holds a long-standing and clear position on the issue of the Yasukuni Shrine. In this crucial year that marks the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII, we urge the Japanese side to face up to and show deep remorse for the history of aggression, properly deal with issues related and make tangible efforts to win the trust of its Asian neighbors and the international community.
Q: Japanese Prime Minister Abe said in an interview yesterday that now that he would succeed the spirit of the Murayama Statement, there is no need to include key words such as “colonial rule”, “aggression” and “heartfelt apology” in his statement on the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII. Does the Chinese side care about the use of these key words in Abe’s statement?
A: As I just put it, we hope that the Japanese side would listen attentively to the call for justice from across the world and within Japan, honor previous Japanese cabinets’ statements on and commitments to facing squarely and reflecting upon the history of aggression, and take concrete steps to win the trust of its Asian neighbors and the international community.