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Progress sought in Japan ties

By WANG XU in Tokyo | CHINA DAILY | Updated: 2022-01-14 09:42

Sino-Japanese ties are like "a boat sailing against the current", said a senior Chinese diplomat in Tokyo, adding that "we must forge ahead or it will be driven back".

Yang Yu, charge d'affaires of the Chinese embassy in Japan, made the remarks on Thursday during a visit to Soka University, which had played an important role in restoring relations for the two neighbors.

The university is located 40 kilometers west of Tokyo.

Behind-the-scenes efforts in the late 1960s of Daisaku Ikeda, one of the university's founders, had helped establish the groundwork for a series of political-level exchanges between the two countries, which led to the restoration of diplomatic relations in 1972. To honor that, the campus has two cherry trees that were named after Chinese then-premier Zhou Enlai and his wife Deng Yingchao.

Thursday's visit was part of a broader series of events on the schedule this year to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between China and Japan.

"We are here to jointly review the development history of our ties. We should stay true to our original aspiration when we normalized the relationship and implement consensus reached by our leaders and promote a relationship that meets the requirements of the new era," Yang said.

Yoshihisa Baba, president of Soka University, said his university will hold Ikeda's belief to promote friendship between China and Japan.

"I sincerely wish the Beijing Winter Olympics a great success, and hope that Japan and China will take this opportunity (the 50th anniversary) to carry out various forms of exchanges," he said.

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