Japan, China Foreign Ministers Hold Phone Talks, Work Toward Early China Visit for Hayashi

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi

Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi on Thursday spoke with his Chinese counterpart Qin Gang, who agreed to continue efforts to realize an early visit to China by Hayashi. It was the first time for the two men to talk since Qin assumed office at the end of last year.

According to a senior Japanese Foreign Ministry official, Hayashi called for the establishment of “constructive and stable Japan-China relations” and Qin expressed his support. Hayashi also expressed his concern over China’s attempts to unilaterally change the status quo, noting the ongoing provocations by the China Coast Guard vessels near the Senkaku Islands in Okinawa Prefecture, and stressed the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.

Tokyo and Beijing initially agreed to coordinate Hayashi’s visit to China during a summit meeting last November.