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China lashes back at Japan comments
Updated: 2006-02-06 07:39

China on Sunday condemned remarks by Japanese foreign minister Taro Aso that credited Taiwan's high educational standards to Japan's 50-year colonial occupation of the island, as wartime memories again threatened relations.

China lashes back at Japan comments
Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Aso. [AFP]
Aso's remarks, reported earlier by the Kyodo news agency, distorted history, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Kong Quan was quoted by the Xinhua News Agency as saying.

"We are shocked by and express our strong indignation over the Japanese foreign minister's remark of overtly glorifying invasion history," Kong said.

Aso, speaking in Fukuoka on the southern island of Kyushu on Saturday, said improvements in schooling and literacy during Japan's colonisation of Taiwan had helped the island today achieve a high level of education, Kyodo reported.

Kong said Aso's comments were morally offensive and "will ultimately cause disbenefit to Japan itself", Xinhua said.

Japan's occupation "made Taiwan people suffer enslavement and brought grave disaster to the Chinese nation. It is a fact that everyone in the world knows," Kong said.

"The half-a-century colonization of the island was an evil aspect of the Japanese militaristic invasion against China," he added.

A Xinhua commentary on Sunday also criticised Aso for suggesting Taiwan was a "country".

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