FM: China ready to enhance cooperation with Japan on disaster reduction

2008-07-24 12:25:31 GMT       2008-07-24 20:25:31 (Beijing Time)       Xinhua English

BEIJING, July 24 (Xinhua) -- Chinese Foreign Ministry said on Thursday China is ready to promote cooperation with Japan on disaster prevention and reduction.

"It is very necessary for China and Japan, two seismically active countries, to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in this aspect," said the ministry's spokesman Liu Jianchao, "China holds a positive attitude toward this," he added.

The two countries were both hit by earthquakes on Thursday. A 5.6-magnitude aftershock and another of 6.0 magnitude jolted the area between Ningqiang County, Shaanxi Province and Qingchuan County, Sichuan Province early Thursday morning and in the afternoon, respectively, while a quake measuring 6.8 magnitude hit northeastern Japan early Thursday morning.

Liu said disaster prevention and reduction is an important area for the cooperation between Asian nations, and will also become an important cooperation field between China and Japan.

He said Chinese President Hu Jintao had exchanged views with Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda on such cooperation during the G8 summit and both sides adopted a positive attitude.

"We hope the relevant departments of both countries will further strengthen cooperation," he added.

Liu noted that Japan has given a helping hand to China after the May 12 massive quake in Sichuan Province, and China has expressed gratitude through many ways to the Japanese government and people, and to the Japanese rescue team and medical team to China's quake-hit area.

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