10 August 2017

News Story: Japan, China in testy exchange over Tokyo's South China Sea remarks

By Audrey Morallo

MANILA, Philippines — Japan and China had a tension-filled meeting following Tokyo’s critical remarks at the East Asia Summit over Beijing’s island-building and military activities in the West Philippine Sea, an exchange confirmed by a Japanese government spokesperson.

Japanese media reported that the China Foreign Minister Wang Yi told his newly-appointed counterpart, Taro Kono, in a bilateral meeting: “Frankly speaking, we were disappointed to hear your comments.”

This statement was in reaction to the statement of Kono, Tokyo’s top diplomat, calling on China to respect the rule of international law regarding its military construction in the South China Sea, part of which Manila claims and calls the West Philippine Sea.

Kono said that Beijing should learn how to act as a big power, a statement that was confirmed by Toshihide Ando, a Japanese deputy press secretary.

“Responsible player? Something around that line, yeah,” Ando told Philstar.com after a media conference when asked to confirm this remark from Tokyo’s chief envoy.

Read the full story at PhilStar