China, Japan Say Relations Thawing 胡锦涛菅直人会晤 释放关系缓和信号

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China, Japan Say Relations Thawing 胡锦涛菅直人会晤 释放关系缓和信号

Post by Admin on Mon Nov 15, 2010 11:22 am

From WSJ.com
在一场涉及长期领土争端的事故引发中日之间为时数周的紧张关系之后,两国领导人周末暗示,这两个亚洲最大经济与政治强国之间跌入冰点的双边关系正在缓慢解冻,


Associated Press
日本警察维持秩序:横滨的反华游行。日本首相菅直人(Naoto Kan)说,在周末横滨亚太经济合作组织(APEC)论坛非正式场合,他和中国国家主席胡锦涛举行双边会晤,两人同意加强双边关系。

菅直人周日在一场新闻发布会上说,我们明确将推动相互之间的战略互惠关系向前发展;我认为两国能够回到6月份本人就职时的大方向。

与这种总体上的乐观情绪相呼应,中国外交部周六晚间发表声明说,胡锦涛呼吁两国关系“沿着健康稳定的轨道向前发展”。

虽然要处理的问题很多,或许也正是因为这个原因,菅直人与胡锦涛之间的会晤似乎是匆忙安排的,用了不到半个小时。电视播报了会晤的开头,首先是菅直人照本宣科地念一份书面声明。日本官员特别强调这次会晤“非常诚恳”,但中方在数小时后才证实有过这次会晤。

没有迹象表明两国在领土争端或其他关键双边问题上达成了妥协,这似乎也反映了两国裂痕之深。菅直人说,我们明确了我们的基本立场,即该地区没有领土争议。这是在暗示,日本认为中国对处于最近争端中心的一片岛屿的领土主张属于无效。日本对这片岛屿也有领土主张。

菅直人与胡锦涛的会晤,怎么也比不上周末论坛上东京与华盛顿之间的积极言辞和友好身体语言。但和过去两个月的言语攻击比起来,却是一个明显的转变。

这场中日峰会是9月份中国一艘拖网渔船与日本海上保安厅一艘巡逻船相撞以来,两国之间首次举行这样的正式会晤。撞船事件发生在争议岛屿附近,不仅导致两国外交关系陷入霜冻,而且使两个重要贸易伙伴之间的其他关系也遭遇严寒。

胡锦涛周日早些时候向APEC领导人发表的讲话中没有提及与菅直人的会晤,也没有太多提及中日关系。但据中国代表团公布的讲话书面稿,胡锦涛的确说过中国将继续实施睦邻友好的地区政策。据日本外务省一名官员,胡锦涛周六还再次承诺允许对日本出口稀土这种重要的矿产。

一些地区国家的政府和商界领袖说,他们希望中国和日本能摈弃此次争端。新加坡总理李显龙(Lee Hsien Loong)周六在横滨举行的商界领袖会议上说,领土争端问题自古有之,不会很快解决。他呼吁中日两国走出争端,以从更大范围上改善它们的关系。他说,挑战在于在解决这一争端的同时又不会升级至总体关系,也不会令整体局势恶化。

一些出席会议的商界领袖对此表示赞同。野村控股的董事长氏家纯一(Junichi Ujiie)说,那些群岛一直都是一个问题,或许将永远都是。地缘政治有时会成为棘手的问题,但贸易是一条互惠的途径,必须继续进行下去。

日本政府迫于中国的外交压力释放中方渔民的决定使日本首相菅直人受到了反对派政治人士和抗议团体的批评。菅直人政府还因拒绝公布海上相撞事件的录像遭受了严厉指责,此前该录像遭到非法泄露后被公布到了互联网上。

由于愈加认为东京对此次事件处理不当,组建仅六个月的本届日本政府的公众支持率大幅下滑。《朝日新闻》(Asahi newspaper)的一项调查显示,菅直人就任首相时在日本登记选民中的支持率约为60%,而日本共同社(Kyodo News)的一份调查显示,截至本月初,这一支持率下滑至32.7%。

APEC会议引来了日本抗议者的示威活动,他们对中国在一系列问题上的立场感到不满,包括被日本称作尖阁列岛、被中国称为钓鱼岛的有争议岛屿。周六,数千名抗议者的呼喊声回荡在横滨会议中心外,即便他们被隔离在距离会场几个街区之外的地方。周日早上,由约一百名示威者组成的较小规模的团体聚集在一辆装有扩音器的卡车旁。参加抗议的日本北部城市仙台市前市长梅原克彦(Katsuhiko Umehara)说,现在中国首先试图控制南中国海,然后是东中国海,包括尖阁列岛。梅原克彦说,日本政府的反应太软弱了。

在中日领导人此次举行正式会晤前,过去数周中进行了微妙的外交运作。

Chester Dawson / Aaron Back

The leaders of China and Japan signaled over the weekend that icy bilateral relations between Asia's largest economic and political powers are slowly thawing, after several weeks of tension triggered by an incident involving a longstanding territorial dispute.

Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan said that he and Chinese President Hu Jintao agreed to strengthen ties between their two nations at a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the weekend's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, or APEC, forum in Yokohama.

'We confirmed that we will promote our strategic relationship of mutual benefit,' said Mr. Kan at a press conference Sunday. 'I think we were able to bring the general direction to the time when I took office in June,' he added.

The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement late Saturday echoing that general sense of optimism, saying that Mr. Hu called for keeping relations with Japan 'on a healthy and stable track.'

Despite the many issues at hand -- or perhaps because of them -- the meeting between Messrs. Kan and Hu appeared to have been arranged hastily and lasted less than half an hour. The meeting, which at its beginning was televised, opened with the Japanese leader stiffly reading a prepared statement. Japanese officials went out of their way to portray the session as 'very cordial,' but it took the Chinese side several hours to confirm that it took place.

There was no sign of compromise on the territorial dispute or other key bilateral issues, which seemed to underscore the depth of the discord. 'We made clear our basic position that there is no territorial dispute in this region,' said Mr. Kan, indicating that Japan doesn't consider China's territorial claims to the group of island at the center of the latest flare-up to be valid. Japan also claims the islands.

None of that matched the positive rhetoric and friendly body language evident between Tokyo and Washington at the weekend forum. But it was a marked shift from the rhetorical broadsides over the past two months.

The Sino-Japanese summit was the first such formal meeting since a Chinese fishing trawler collided with a Japanese coast guard cutter in September. The collision, which occurred near the islands, triggered a diplomatic freeze and a chilling of the broader relationship between the two major trading partners.

In a speech to APEC leaders earlier on Sunday, Mr. Hu didn't bring up his meeting with Mr. Kan or address Sino-Japanese relations more broadly. But China's leader did say his nation remains committed to 'the regional policy of building good-neighborliness and friendship,' according to text of the speech released by the Chinese delegation. Mr. Hu on Saturday also reiterated a pledge to allow exports of crucial minerals known as rare earths to Japan, according to a Japanese foreign ministry official.

Some regional government and business leaders said they hoped China and Japan would be able to put the dispute behind them. Speaking at a meeting of business leaders in Yokohama on Saturday, Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said the territorial issue is 'an old problem that is not going away anytime soon.' Mr. Lee called upon the two countries to move beyond it in order to improve their broader ties. 'The challenge is to manage this without carrying into the overall relationship and souring the overall mood,' he said.

Several business leaders in attendance agreed. 'That group of islands has always been an issue and probably always will be,' said Junichi Ujiie, chairman of Nomura Holdings Inc. 'Geopolitics can become a hot potato from time to time, but trade is a mutually beneficial path that must continue to be pursued.'

Japanese Prime Minister Kan has faced criticism from opposition politicians and protest groups for his government's decision to release the Chinese fisherman under diplomatic pressure from China. Mr. Kan's administration has also been under fire for refusing to release videos of the sea clash, which were then illicitly leaked and posted online.

As a result of a growing sense of Tokyo's mishandling of its response to the incident, the six-month old government's public approval rating has plummeted. An Asahi newspaper poll showed that Mr. Kan came into office with the support of about 60% of Japanese registered voters, but a Kyodo News survey showed that falling to 32.7% as of earlier this month.

The APEC conference attracted demonstrations by Japanese protesters unhappy with China's position on a number of issues, including the disputed islands, which are known as the Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China. On Saturday, the cries of thousands of protesters could be heard echoing outside the Yokohama convention centers, even though they were kept several blocks away from the meeting site. On Sunday morning, a smaller group of about 100 demonstrators were gathered around a truck equipped with bullhorns. 'China is now trying to dominate first of all the South China Sea, then the East China Sea, including the Senkaku islands,' said protester Katsuhiko Umehara, a former mayor of the northern Japanese city of Sendai. 'The reaction of the government of Japan is so weak.'

The formal summit between the Chinese and Japanese leaders came after a delicate diplomatic dance over the past several weeks.

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