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China Advocates Peace on Nanjing Massacre Anniv.

China Advocates Peace on Nanjing Massacre Anniv.China Advocates Peace on Nanjing Massacre Anniv.

China and Japan should set aside hatred and not allow the minority who led Japan to war to affect relations now, Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Saturday, as the country marked its first national memorial day on the occasion of the 77th anniversary of the Nanjing Massacre.

China and Japan have long sparred over their painful history. China consistently reminds its people of the 1937 massacre in which it says Japanese troops killed 300,000 people in its then capital, Reuters wrote.

 A postwar Allied tribunal put the death toll at 142,000, but some conservative Japanese politicians and scholars deny a massacre took place at all.

Ties had deteriorated sharply over the past year following Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to the Yasukuni Shrine honoring war criminals among Japan’s war dead. The two are also involved in a spat over islets in the East China Sea.

But both countries, mindful of the economic stakes, reached agreement last month to try to reset ties during an ice-breaking meeting between Xi and Abe in Beijing.

Speaking at a memorial in the eastern city of Nanjing, a somber Xi said that while history must never be forgotten, the future was just as important.

“The reason we are having a memorial for the Nanjing Massacre victims is to recall that all good-hearted people yearn for and hold fast to peace, not to prolong hatred,” Xi said, in comments carried live on state television.

“The people of China and Japan should pass on friendship from generation to generation,” he added.

“Forgetting history is a betrayal, and denying a crime is to repeat a crime. We should not hate a people just because a small minority of militarists set off an invasion and war.”

 

Financialtribune.com