Thu, October 11, 2012
China > China & World > Japan in islands row

Diaoyu Islands can regain peace only if Japan admits dispute

2012-10-11 06:34:36 GMT2012-10-11 14:34:36(Beijing Time)

By Yuan Yue,Sina English

The current dispute over the Diaoyu Islands, which has been caused completely by the unilateral actions of Japan, has sent the Sino-Japan relations to a new low.

For once, the far-sighted from both countries hoped to bring their bilateral ties a step forward, by taking the opportunity of the 40th anniversary of the normalization of their diplomatic relations.

Now, however, the hope has come to naught. Japan's wrongdoing has left the bilateral political and economic exchanges stalemate, if not a deadlock. Cooperation between the region’s second and third economies are now at stake, and grudges between the two peoples mounting.

The spat, in general, derives from three aspects: historical issues, territorial issues, and geopolitics. Which, if properly handled, Sino-Japan relationship can be brought to a sound track; otherwise, more troubles and flare-ups would be inevitable. This has been proved in the past four decades.

Now, however, the rightists in Japan are adding fuel to the flames.

Vulnerability seen in the bilateral ties does not go in line with the common interests of the two countries, or the whole Pacific region.

To draw the situation back on the right track, we have to abide by the "four documents" signed over the past 40 years: the China-Japan Joint Statement, issued on September 29, 1972, Sino-Japanese Treaty of Peace and Friendship, on August 12, 1978, China-Japan Joint Declaration, on November November 26, 1998, and also, the Sino-Japanese joint statement on all-round promotion of their strategic and mutually beneficial relations, signed on May 7, 2008.

At the heart of these documents is the spirit that we should "learn from history and face up to the future." The Diaoyu Islands can only regain peace if we extend the spirit to the dispute.

At present, Japan is claiming the "sovereignty over the Islands" by whitewashing the history, denying its agreement with China to "shelve disputes"-- along the way to the existence of the dispute, and more absurdly, highlighting Japan's "claim" by its

unilateral "nationalization".

These actions totally defy the spirit, undermining the mutual trust, and spoiling the cooperation.

Admittedly, the dispute between the two sides is not likely to be bridged in a short term. But if we look around, many a rivaling group usually has interests in common below the surface of discords. The shared interests, more often than not, can mitigate conflict and create conditions for cooperation.

This calls for wisdom and resolution. At this stage, we should focus more on our common interests instead of disparities. Otherwise, the situation can only get worse.

For that matter, China is reluctant to escalate the dispute, although it is not afraid to do so. The fundamental common interests of the two, as expected, is to achieve a peaceful development--for China, this is already incorporated into its long-term strategy. Japan, however, is still mulling on where it is going.

From the long-term interest between the two countries, it is crucial that we handle the dispute properly.

If Japan sincerely expected that peace would finally descend upon the Diaoyu Islands, it should first and foremost admit the dispute, and then, to shelve it, at least for the time being.

Sendai Mayor says panda rental negotiations with China in limbo

By Mei Jingya, Sina English

Okuyama Emiko, Mayor of Japan’s Sendai city, said at a press conference on Wednesday that talks between the city’s Yagiyama Zoological Park and China over a panda rental project were in limbo.

After the earthquake and tsunami devastated much of the Japanese city last year, Sendai Mayor asked Beijing if it would loan a pair of giant pandas to the Yagiyama Zoo to cheer up young kids in the region.

Emiko said negotiations with China may be stalled by impaired ties between Beijing and Tokyo over the disputed islands chain in the East China Sea.


Chinese patriot solo-sails into 8 km off Diaoyu Islands

As the Japan-triggered flare-up over the Diaoyu Islands enrages the Chinese people, Chinese patriots choose to go on their own way to show indignation toward Japan’s plot to seize the Chinese territory.

After nine and a half days of sailing on the sea, Guo Chuan, preparing for a solo round-the-globe sailing in his "Tsingtao", concluded the first sea trial and reached the port of Tsingtao at 10:30 p.m. on October 8. 

The main task of this sea trial was to transport his 40-foot-class boat, named "Tsingtao", from Hong Kong to Tsingtao, China’s east port city in Shandong Province, and test the controlling system, communication and navigation equipments on the boat.  

During the sea trial, Guo’s boat was seen sailing in the water 8 kilometers off the Diaoyu Islands. The Japanese coast guard dispatched six patrol ships in attempt to intercept Guo’s boat. In the process, the Japanese fleet was photographed pressing his sailing boat from both sides. 

The 47-year-old has already made history in China creating many “firsts”: His is the first Chinese who participated in the Clipper Round the World in 2006; the first Chinese who completed the VOLVO Ocean Race in 2008-2009; and appointed as the first Chinese "Champion for Peace" by Peace and Sport Association.  

In September, Guo decided to challenge a new record: trying a solo sailing non-stop around the globe.

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