Carrots and sticks for China rivals

Premier signals warmer ties with Japan and Dalai Lama, but Taiwan still frozen out.

    China says it is open to talks with the Dalai Lama provided he stops "splittist" activities [AP]
    Wen said the "ice-breaking" trip by Shinzo Abe, the Japanese prime minister, to China in October showed that ties which hit bottom with a series of anti-Japanese protests in Chinese cities in 2005 were back on track.
     
    "And I hope that my visit to Japan in April this year will be an ice-thawing journey," Wen said at a wide ranging news conference on Friday, the final day of the annual National People's Congress, China's parliament.
     
    Wen said that he expected agreements would be signed on bilateral economic co-operation, as well as in the fields of science and education with Japan.
     
    Dalai Lama
     

    "We will never allow anyone to change the history, the reality and the universally recognised legal status of Taiwan"

    Wen Jiabao,
    Chinese premier

    On the Dalai Lama, Wen said China would not just "pay attention to what he says, but even more what he does".
     
    "We hope the Dalai Lama can do more beneficial things for the unity of the motherland and the development of Tibet," he added.
     
    The Dalai Lama fled into exile in India in 1959 after a failed uprising against communist rule following China's annexing of Tibet in 1951.
     
    Beijing was a lot less conciliatory towards Taiwan, which it considers a renegade province.
     
    "We are strongly opposed to any secessionist activities aimed at achieving Taiwan independence," Wen said.
     
    "We will never allow anyone to change the history, the reality and the universally recognised legal status of Taiwan - that is Taiwan has been an inalienable part of Chinese territory since ancient times."
     
    China has previously threatened war if Taiwan makes its de facto independence official.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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