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INTERNATIONAL > East Asia & Pacific

Abe, Li agree to improve Japan-China relations

All papers reported on a meeting held between Prime Minister Abe and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in Manila on Monday, saying that the two leaders confirmed that Japan and China will further improve their bilateral relations ahead of the 40th anniversary next year of the Japan-China Peace and Friendship Treaty. The two leaders also agreed to make arrangements to hold a trilateral summit with South Korean President Moon, which Li is expected to attend, at an early date. The papers noted that Abe also held talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Vietnam on Saturday, claiming that the Japanese leader’s unprecedented meetings with both Xi and Li in such a short period of time are a sign of improved ties between Tokyo and Beijing. Mainichi commented, however, that despite the leaders’ intention to improve the bilateral relations, it appears unlikely that Tokyo and Beijing will be able to mend their ties quickly due to the thorny issues that still exist, such as China’s unilateral gas field development in the East China Sea and its detention of eight Japanese nationals on espionage charges.

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