China warns Japan while speaking ahead of Biden and Suga meeting


BEIJING (AP) – China’s foreign minister has warned Japan not to partner with the United States to counter Beijing, as Japan speaks more about human rights in China’s Xinjiang region ahead of a summit between the United States and the United States. Japan next week.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told his Japanese counterpart in a phone call Monday night that his two countries should ensure that their relations “do not get involved in the so-called confrontation between the major countries,” he said. a statement from the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

Wang quoted Wang as saying that “China hopes that Japan, as an independent country, will look at China’s development in an objective and rational way, rather than being misled by some countries that have a biased view against China.”

Japan, a close US ally that is home to major US naval and air force bases, shares US concerns about China’s military build-up and claims to territory in the South and East Seas of the United States. China. However, its main business and investment interests in China have sometimes dampened its criticism of its larger neighbor.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga will travel to Washington to meet with President Joe Biden on April 16 in what will be the US leader’s first in-person summit since he took office in January.

Biden, unlike his predecessor Donald Trump, has emphasized rebuilding ties with European and Asian allies as the United States prepares to compete with a rising China.

Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi raised human rights in China’s Xinjiang region and Hong Kong, both of which are important to Biden. He also reiterated Japan’s protest against China’s presence in waters around a group of uninhabited islands controlled by Japan that China claims in the East China Sea.

Motegi told reporters on Tuesday that he expressed “great concern and strongly requested China to take concrete action” to improve these issues, including the human rights situation in the Xinjiang region.

Some members of a foreign policy team within Suga’s conservative ruling party have called on their government to take a tougher stance against China over the Xinjiang situation. They say Japan should adopt a law to impose sanctions against a foreign country for human rights violations.

The United States, Canada, Great Britain and the European Union have adopted such a law and say that Japan is the only country in the Group of Seven that does not.

Japan has taken a softer approach in maintaining dialogue rather than imposing unilateral sanctions. But Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato said on Tuesday that Japan is open to the possibility of having such a law.

“It is necessary to analyze and consider whether Japan should adopt a system that unilaterally determines human rights violations and imposes sanctions, taking into consideration various points of view, including our current foreign and human rights policies and trends in the international community.” said (asterisk). .

Kato said that it is important for each country to do what it can to improve human rights conditions. “Japan will continue to cooperate with the United States and other related countries,” he said.

Wang objected to Japanese interference in China’s internal affairs in Xinjiang and Hong Kong, the Chinese statement said.

Taiwan is another potential flash point, and Suga said earlier this week that Japan would cooperate with the United States on the issue. China regards the autonomous island as a renegade province that should be under Chinese rule.

China, in a signal to the United States and its allies, recently sent a group of aircraft carriers to waters near Taiwan for training exercises.

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Yamaguchi reported from Tokyo.

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