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Diplomatic Bluebook says coronavirus broke out in China and wreaking havoc across the world

NHK reported that MOFA states in this year’s Diplomatic Bluebook that the new coronavirus “broke out in China and is wreaking havoc across the world.” According to the network, the report says the coronavirus pandemic has impacted the world “economically, socially, and diplomatically” and that international communications and cooperation are the keys to containing the virus. It reportedly cites the postponement of Chinese leader Xi’s visit to Japan originally planned for this spring as one of the examples of the virus’s impact on diplomacy, but also says that Japan and China worked closely on the repatriation of Japanese citizens from China by sending chartered planes to Wuhan. Meanwhile, the Diplomatic Bluebook also reportedly stresses Japan’s position that it has consistently supported Taiwan’s participation in the WHO annual assembly as an observer. Noting that the Diplomatic Bluebook issued last year drew criticism from the ruling camp as it failed to state that the four Russian-controlled islands belong to Japan, the network said this year’s report says Japan has sovereignty over the Northern Territories. According to the network, the report also calls South Korea an important neighbor, but notes that bilateral ties remain strained due to the wartime labor issue.

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