Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono has called on China to rein in its military activities in the East China Sea ahead of President Xi Jinping’s planned spring visit to Japan.
In a speech given on 14 January at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, DC, Kono said that Tokyo has “strong concerns” over the “frequent activities of the People’s Liberation Army [PLA] in the East China Sea” and has urged Beijing to take “positive steps to improve the situation”.
“This spring we are planning to welcome President Xi Jinping as a state guest. We want to extend our heartfelt welcome to the President Xi for his visit,” said Kono, while adding that China “needs to work harder to improve the situation [in the East China Sea] … otherwise we may find a difficult environment for the visit”.
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