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China responds to Japanese leaders’ new year remarks

Updated: Jan 5,2015 8:32 PM     Xinhua

BEIJING — China on Dec 5 responded to Japanese Emperor Akihito and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s new year remarks by urging the country to remain consistent in its words and actions, and to have a correct understanding about its history of aggression.

“We have taken note of Japanese leaders’ relevant remarks. Only by honestly facing up to history can Japan have a future,” said Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying at a press briefing.

In his “New Year Thoughts” released on Jan 1, Japanese Emperor Akihito said Japan should learn from history in 2015, which marks the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.

“It is most important for us to take this opportunity to study and learn from the history of this war ... as we consider the future direction of our country,” said the emperor.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he will express Japan’s remorse for the war, as well as communicate on its postwar history as a pacifist nation and how it will contribute to the Asia-Pacific region and the world.

“We hope Japan will be consistent in its words and actions, have a correct understanding and attitude toward its history of aggression, and abide by its statements and promises regarding history,” Hua said.

She called on Japan to learn lessons from history and stick to a peaceful development road, and to play a constructive role in regional peace, stability and development.