BEIJING, Oct. 12 (Xinhua) -- The Japanese government should admit that a dispute exists over the Diaoyu Islands and go back to negotiations to solve the issue, a commentary in the Friday edition of the People's Daily said.
Japan's repeated claims that no official territorial dispute exists is a trick to encroach on China's territorial sovereignty and challenge international order and stability, according to the commentary carried by the flagship newspaper of the Communist Party of China.
On Sept. 19, Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Genba appeared at a press conference and cited talks held between former Japanese Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka and former Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai in 1972, indicating that the two leaders did not reach a common ground over shelving the Diaoyu Islands dispute, said the article.
The commentary said the foreign minister left out a key part of the talks during which Zhou and Tanaka agreed that priority should be placed on the overall interests of recovering bilateral ties and that the Diaoyu Islands dispute should be shelved until a later date.
In 1971, just before the talks, the United States signed the Okinawa Reversion Agreement with Japan to return the Ryukyu Islands (known to the Japanese as Okinawa), which were placed under U.S. trusteeship by the Treaty of San Francisco.
The 1971 agreement arbitrarily expanded the jurisdiction of the Ryukyu Islands to include the Diaoyu Islands, which are Chinese territory.
China has firmly opposed this backroom deal between Japan and the U.S. since then.
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