Japan delegation attempts to cool tensions with China

Posted on May 11, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , |

Japan delegation attempts to cool tensions with China

Japanese lawmakers visit the controversial Yasukuni shrine to honour the war dead at the shrine’s spring festival in Tokyo on April 22. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit last December to the shrine, where those honoured include 14 Class-A war criminals, heightened tensions between Japan and China.

Photograph by: Yoshikazu Tsuno , AFP

It seems that whenever the words “Asia” and “islands” come up, it is always in the context of renewed regional tensions.

And while that was certainly true last week with a flare-up of incidents between China, Vietnam and the Philippines in the South China Sea, there has been a turn for the better concerning the dispute in the East China Sea.

Of course, with relations tense between Beijing and Tokyo in the past few years, any improvement in Sino-Japanese ties is good for regional stability. Last week, a nine-member delegation from the Japanese Diet (led by ex-foreign minister Masahiko Komura) made its way to Beijing to meet with top legislator Zhang Dejiang, one of the highest-ranking members in China’s Politburo Standing Committee.

China and Japan have been at odds in recent years over territorial rights to a small group of islands in the East China Sea, which Beijing calls the Diaoyus and Tokyo, the Senkakus. Emotions were further incensed when China created an Air Defence Notification Zone over the islands last November, followed by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to the controversial Yasukuni Shrine for Japanese war dead last December. A group of Japanese lawmakers made a separate visit to the shrine — home to 14 Class-A war criminals — in April.

So Komura’s visit (at the head of a delegation chosen from the Japan-China Friendship Parliamentarians’ Union in Tokyo) in itself can be seen as a step forward in improving ties. Last year, a similar visit had to be cancelled because, as The Economist put it, “the group was told no high Communist Party officials would meet it.”

Tokyo-based Asahi Shimbun reported Komura said Abe would like to hold a high-level summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the APEC conference later this year. And while Chinese officials said they are willing to continue some form of dialogue — the key being “to determine if the Abe administration views Beijing as a friend or foe” — Beijing is non-committal concerning a Xi-Abe summit.

Chinese state news agency Xinhua reported that Beijing is content to continue dialogue, but remains adamant that Tokyo is to blame for recent tensions.

“China has always welcomed people from all walks of life in Japan … to make positive moves to improve China-Japan relations,” the Xinhua quoted Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying as saying. Hua added that events such as the Yasukuni Shrine visits “pose severe political obstacles for high-level exchanges.”

“Whoever started the trouble should end it,” Hua told Xinhua, not so subtly pointing the finger at Abe. Other reports quoted Hua as stating: “The crux of this (Sino-Japanese) problem is clear to all.”

Japan also has its misgivings. In an editorial, the Tokyo-based Yomiuri Shimbun said: “It is unfortunate that the Chinese side remains obstinate” toward Komura’s offer of a “forward-looking proposal.”

“We believe most of the causes of the current stalemate in bilateral ties stem from the Chinese side,” the editorial said, citing the continued presence of Chinese boats in the waters near the disputed islands. “It is time that China thought seriously about how to bring an end to ‘mutually detrimental’ relations.”

It would appear that Komura’s visit did little to change the underlying distrust both sides have for one another. Observers speculate that the decline in Sino-Japanese trade in recent years has dented both economies — currently ranked second- and third-largest in the world, respectively — and the visit may be an attempt to re-assume a closer business-only relationship. Of course, that would mean the fundamental causes of tensions between Beijing and Tokyo remain unaddressed.

It will only take another misstep to re-escalate tensions. But, as the saying goes, the road has to start somewhere.


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Cleaning up radiation hopeless, says writer: “There is no end” —

Posted on May 2, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

“We adults have to bear a responsibility for the future” — “Impossible to decontaminate vast forested areas, and Japan is a country of forests and mountains”

Title: Japan writers’ group gets eye-opener in Chernobyl
Source: AJW by The Asahi Shimbun
Date: May 02, 2012

If the pen is mightier than the sword, then senior members of the Japan writers’ P.E.N. Club, who visited the shuttered Chernobyl nuclear power plant in mid-April, are now armed with some mighty ink. […]

Jiro Asada, the president of the association of progressively minded writers, on April 25 reiterated his opposition to the use of nuclear power.

“There is no end to the cleanup work,” Asada told a news conference. “The situation is hopeless. We adults have to bear a responsibility for the future.” […]

“Some say that nuclear power benefits the economy,” said Atsuo Nakamura, another P.E.N. Club board member. “That may be a joke in the opposite sense.” […]

“It has been demonstrated that it is impossible to decontaminate vast forested areas,” Nakamura said. “And Japan is a country of forests and mountains.” […]

Read the report here

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Russia Stunned After Japanese Plan To Evacuate 40 Million Revealed

Posted on April 16, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Posted: 16 Apr 2012 09:05 AM PDT

A new report circulating in the Kremlin today prepared by the Foreign Ministry on the planned re-opening of talks with Japan over the disputed Kuril Islands during the next fortnight states that Russian diplomats were “stunned” after being told by their Japanese counterparts that upwards of 40 million of their peoples were in “extreme danger” of life threatening radiation poisoning and could very well likely be faced with forced evacuations away from their countries eastern most located cities… including the world’s largest one, Tokyo.

The Kuril Islands are located in Russia’s Sakhalin Oblast region and stretch approximately 1,300 km (810 miles) northeast from Hokkaidō, Japan, to Kamchatka, Russia, separating the Sea of Okhotsk from the North Pacific Ocean. There are 56 islands and many more minor rocks. It consists of Greater Kuril Ridge and Lesser Kuril Ridge, all of which were captured by Soviet Forces in the closing days of World War II from the Japanese.

The “extreme danger” facing tens of millions of the Japanese peoples is the result of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster that was a series of equipment failures, nuclear meltdowns, and releases of radioactive materials at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, following the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on 11 March 2011.

According to this report, Japanese diplomats have signaled to their Russian counterparts that the returning of the Kuril Islands to Japan is “critical” as they have no other place to resettle so many people that would, in essence, become the largest migration of human beings since the 1930’s when Soviet leader Stalin forced tens of millions to resettle Russia’s far eastern regions.

Important to note, this report continues, are that Japanese diplomats told their Russian counterparts that they were, also, “seriously considering” an offer by China to relocate tens of millions of their citizens to the Chinese mainland to inhabit what are called the “ghost cities,” built for reasons still unknown and described, in part, by London’s Daily Mail News Service in their 18 December 2010 article titled “The Ghost Towns Of China: Amazing Satellite Images Show Cities Meant To Be Home To Millions Lying Deserted” that says:

“These amazing satellite images show sprawling cities built in remote parts of China that have been left completely abandoned, sometimes years after their construction. Elaborate public buildings and open spaces are completely unused, with the exception of a few government vehicles near communist authority offices. Some estimates put the number of empty homes at as many as 64 million, with up to 20 new cities being built every year in the country’s vast swathes of free land.”

Foreign Ministry experts in this report note that should Japan accept China’s offer, the combined power of these two Asian peoples would make them the largest super-power in human history with an economy larger than that of the United States and European Union combined and able to field a combined military force of over 200 million.

To how dire the situation is in Japan was recently articulated by Japanese diplomat Akio Matsumura who warned that the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear plant may ultimately turn into an event capable of extinguishing all life on Earth.

According to the Infowars.Com News Service: “Matsumura posted [this] startling entry on his blog following a statement made by Japan’s former ambassador to Switzerland, Mitsuhei Murata, on the situation at Fukushima.

Speaking at a public hearing of the Budgetary Committee of the House of Councilors on 22 March 2012, Murata warned that “if the crippled building of reactor unit 4 – with 1,535 fuel rods in the spent fuel pool 100 feet (30 meters) above the ground – collapses, not only will it cause a shutdown of all six reactors but will also affect the common spent fuel pool containing 6,375 fuel rods, located some 50 meters from reactor 4,” writes Matsumura.

In both cases the radioactive rods are not protected by a containment vessel; dangerously, they are open to the air. This would certainly cause a global catastrophe like we have never before experienced. He stressed that the responsibility of Japan to the rest of the world is immeasurable. Such a catastrophe would affect us all for centuries. Ambassador Murata informed us that the total numbers of the spent fuel rods at the Fukushima Daiichi site excluding the rods in the pressure vessel is 11,421.”

Disturbingly, the desperate situation facing Japan is, also, facing the United States as Russian military observers overflying the US this week as part of the Open Skies Treaty are reporting “unprecedented” amounts of radiation in the Western regions of that country, a finding that was further confirmed by scientists with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute who have confirmed that a wave of highly radioactive waste is headed directly for the US west coast.

Important to note is that this new wave of Fukushima radiation headed towards the US is in addition to earlier radiation events that American scientists are now blaming for radioactive particles from Japan being detected in California kelp.

Though the news of this ongoing global catastrophe is still being heavily censored in the US, the same cannot be said about Japan, and as recently reported by the leading Japanese newspaper The Mainichi Daily News that reports:

“One of the biggest issues that we face is the possibility that the spent nuclear fuel pool of the No. 4 reactor at the stricken Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant will collapse. This is something that experts from both within and outside Japan have pointed out since the massive quake struck. TEPCO, meanwhile, says that the situation is under control. However, not only independent experts, but also sources within the government say that it’s a grave concern.

The storage pool in the No. 4 reactor building has a total of 1,535 fuel rods, or 460 tons of nuclear fuel, in it. The 7-story building itself has suffered great damage, with the storage pool barely intact on the building’s third and fourth floors. The roof has been blown away. If the storage pool breaks and runs dry, the nuclear fuel inside will overheat and explode, causing a massive amount of radioactive substances to spread over a wide area. Both the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and French nuclear energy company Areva have warned about this risk.

A report released in February by the Independent Investigation Commission on the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident stated that the storage pool of the plant’s No. 4 reactor has clearly been shown to be “the weakest link” in the parallel, chain-reaction crises of the nuclear disaster. The worse-case scenario drawn up by the government includes not only the collapse of the No. 4 reactor pool, but the disintegration of spent fuel rods from all the plant’s other reactors. If this were to happen, residents in the Tokyo metropolitan area would be forced to evacuate.”

Even though this crisis in Japan has been described as “a nuclear war without a war,” and the US Military is being reported is now stocking up on massive amounts of anti-radiation pills in preparation for nuclear fallout, there remains no evidence at all the ordinary peoples are being warned about this danger in any way whatsoever.

April 15, 2012 © EU and US all rights reserved. Permission to use this report in its entirety is granted under the condition it is linked back to its original source at WhatDoesItMean.Com. Freebase content licensed under CC-BY and GFDL.

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