By Chen Yang
"I must stress that Taiwan is part of China and the Taiwan question is purely China's internal affair. China never allows interference in the Taiwan question in any form by any country. China must and will be reunified ."Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Zhao Lijian responded regarding Japan's latest defense white paper, the Defense of Japan 2021, which included for the first time that "stabilizing the situation surrounding Taiwan is important for Japan’s security and the stability of the international community the situation in Taiwan is very important to Japan's security and international stability" at a regular press conference on July 13.
As a close neighbor, Japan should maintain basic respect for China's internal affairs. Using the Defense of Japan 2021 white paper to make indiscreet remarks about the Taiwan question will not only seriously violate the spirit of the four political documents of between China and Japan and Japan's commitments, but also create more uncertainty in the China-Japan relations that are currently facing severe challenges.
Japan has repeatedly caused trouble on Taiwan-related questions, and it has also exposed the sinister intentions of some Japanese politicians to interfere in China's internal affairs. Since the normalization of diplomatic relations in 1972, the Chinese and Japanese governments have successively signed four political documents including the Japan-China Joint Communiqué. These four political documents not only constitute the cornerstone of the development of China-Japan relations but also clearly stipulate the principles for the two sides to deal with major issues such as Taiwan and the Diaoyu Islands. This is an important consensus reached by the two governments through a series of consultations and negotiations. However, it is regrettable that some Japanese politicians still "look back" and take actions that go against the spirit of the four political documents from time to time.
Zhu Songling, director of the Cross-Strait Institute at Beijing Union University's Institute of Taiwan Studies, analyzed that the crazy clamor of some Japanese politicians on Taiwan-related questions reflects that militarism has not yet been completely eliminated in the Japanese society. Some Japanese politicians still point fingers at the Taiwan question because they have not learned profound lessons from history. They are unwilling to see the reunification and hope to interfere in China's internal affairs by intervening in Taiwan affairs to maximize their own interests.
Against the background of the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic and changes unseen in a century, Japan should cherish and maintain the hard-won development of China-Japan relations. However, the Japanese government has repeatedly undermined its relations with China in order to satisfy the selfish interests of containing China's rise and revivalrejuvenation. Lian Degui, director of the Center for Japanese Studies at Shanghai International Studies University, believes that due to the current decline in China-US relations, Japan has chosen to actively cooperate coordinate with the US's strategic deployment and contain China as a loyal ally of the US. If the China-US relations are still not improved, it is expected that Japan will continue to make irresponsible remarks on Taiwan-related questions, which will have a considerable impact on China-Japan relations.
China has adhered to the path of peaceful development and has always been a builder of global peace, a contributor to global development, and a defender of the international order for a long time. However, Japan has manipulated China-related issues and exaggerated neighboring security threats to achieve its own military expansion and get rid of post-war shackles. This will not only damage the political mutual trust between the Chinese and Japanese governments but will also cause serious interference disturbance in China-Japan relations.
It is not easy to get a turnaround in China-Japan relations, especially when the 50th anniversary of the normalization of bilateral diplomatic relations is about to come. It is hoped that Japan will relive the original intention aspiration of the normalization of diplomatic relations, abide by the principles and spirit of the four political documents between China and Japan, correct its mentality and demonstrate respect for China's sovereignty and sincerity in maintaining regional peace and stability.
Editor's note: This article is originally published on haiwainet.cn, which is the website of Overseas Edition of the People's Daily. The article is translated from Chinese into English and edited by the China Military Online. The information, ideas or opinions appearing in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of eng.chinamil.com.cn.