J Sean Curtin: China turns its back on Japan

From Asia Times Online:

The dramatic last-minute cancellation of a meeting between Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and visiting Chinese Vice Prime Minister Wu Yi has plunged relations between Beijing and Tokyo to a perilous new low. The incident indicates that recent efforts to improve battered bilateral ties have collapsed, and highlights the complete deadlock over Koizumi’s contentious annual pilgrimages to the war-tainted Yasukuni Shrine, the issue which forms the backbone of Beijing’s criticisms of his administration.

A senior Japanese diplomat, who did not wish to be identified, told Asia Times Online, “It is a very worrying development. The Chinese have thrown down the gauntlet, and the worrying thing for us is that it looks like Mr Koizumi is going to pick it up.”

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