BEIJING, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei on Thursday urged Japan's leaders to face up to history and win the trust of the international community with concrete action.
Hong's comment was in response to a speech by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at an event hosted by the Hudson Institute on Wednesday in the United States.
In the speech, Abe said Japan's increase in defense spending has not been as big as that of "an immediate neighbor," an apparent reference to China.
"The country has increased its military expenditures, hardly transparent, by more than 10 percent annually for more than 20 years since 1989, while my government has increased its defense budget only by 0.8 percent," he said.
"So call me, if you want, a right-wing militarist," Abe said.
Responding Abe's remarks, Hong said China adheres to the path of peaceful development and a defensive national defense policy.
"China's strategic intent is transparent," he said, noting that the normal and legitimate development of China's national defense capabilities poses no threat to any other countries.
Japan has no right to make irresponsible remarks on China's national defense, he added.
Hong reminded the Japanese that their defense expenditure has maintained strong growth for many years in the post-war decades.
For historical reasons, Japan's activity in military and security areas receives great attention from its Asian neighbors and the international community, he said.
If Japan wants to make contributions to world peace and stability, it should walk the talk; stop creating tensions and stirring confrontations; do more to increase trust with its neighbors; and consider regional peace and stability, he said.
He said that, for some time, Japan has been trying to deny or glorify its history of aggression, and has been condemned by its Asian neighbors and the international society.
Hong urged Japanese leaders to treat the concern seriously.