BEIJING, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- The Japanese government has ridiculously reached an agreement with the self-claimed Japanese "private owners" of China's Diaoyu Islands to formally purchase them soon, a daredevil move that could further wreck its ties with Beijing.
Kyodo confirmed the agreement Wednesday. The "islands-purchasing" prank, the latest in a flurry of Tokyo's much-ballyhooed provocations, is a betrayal of Japan's historical commitment when the two neighboring countries signed the Treaty of Peace and Friendship in 1978.
At that time, both countries committed to shelving the disputes over the islands.
In October 1978, Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping, during his visit to Japan, reiterated the stance at a press conference. "Our generation is not wise enough to find common language on this issue. The next generation will be wiser."
Obviously, the unilateral move by Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's administration has violated this historical consensus on the issue, which is an important precondition for the healthy development of bilateral ties.
The blatant action also tests the Japanese government's credibility.
It, on one hand, has repeated its hope to "develop Japan-China relations in a stable manner from a broad perspective," as expressed in a recent letter by Noda to Chinese President Hu Jintao.
However, on the other, it has challenged Beijing by churning out a barrage of provocative movements to assert its so-called sovereignty over the islands, actions that have noticeably escalated tensions between the two heavyweight Asian countries.
The two countries have big stakes in maintaining peace and stability in Asia-Pacific, and Japan's latest movements are not in line with that aim.
On Monday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei warned that any action by the Japanese side to "nationalize" the islands would be in vain.
China has been Japan's largest trading partner for five years, while Japan is China's fourth biggest trading partner. Any diplomatic showdown between the two would further jeopardize their ever-tightening trade and economic ties.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations, a fine opportunity for both sides to recall the history of their ties and look forward to the future.
Japanese politicians have the responsibility to swiftly take practical actions to ease current tensions with China.
And they also should stick to the right course charted by their predecessors decades ago in dealing with the Diaoyu Islands spat.
Commentary: Japan's buying Diaoyu Islands is flagrant move
BEIJING, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- The Japanese government has agreed to buy China's Diaoyu Islands from their so-called private owners, Japanese media confirmed Wednesday.
The deal, neglecting China's strong opposition, can be regarded as plain robbery. In doing so, the Japanese government is putting on another flagrant action. Full story
China's will to safeguard sovereignty over Diaoyu Islands unswerving: FM
BEIJING, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese government's determination to safeguard its sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands is unswerving, Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said Wednesday.
Hong made the comment in response to media reports that the Japanese government has decided to buy the islets for 2.05 billion yen (26.15 million U.S. dollars) from the islands' Japanese private owners. Full story