China has voiced strong discontent and firm opposition over Japan’s annual defense white paper, saying the paper deliberately plays up the so-called “China military threat”.
The Japanese cabinet on Tuesday approved the defense white paper for 2015, in which it launched multiple accusations against China.
The paper says the security environment surrounding Japan has become increasingly severe, highlighting China’s supposed military build-up, and activities by China in the East China Sea and South China Sea.
In response, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang says the new defense white paper of Japan once again ignores facts, makes irresponsible remarks on China’s normal military growth and maritime activities, deliberately plays up the “China threat” and stirs up tensions.
He stresses that China is committed to a path of peaceful development and national defense policy that is defensive in nature.
The diplomat says China’s strategic intentions are transparent, and China’s development of defense capacity is justified and poses no threat to any other country.
He urges Japan to stop misleading the Japanese people or installing barriers for the improvement of bilateral ties.
The spokesman says China always carries out normal maritime activities following international laws and relevant domestic laws.
He says China’s oil and gas exploration in undisputed waters of the East China Sea under China’s jurisdiction is “justified, reasonable and legitimate”.
Lu says China’s construction on some garrisoned Nansha islands and reefs, which does not affect or target any other country, is fully within China’s sovereignty and beyond reproach.
He also reaffirms that China’s patrolling and law enforcement activities in Chinese territorial waters off the Diaoyu Islands is China’s inherent right to lawfully exercise sovereignty.
Lu says China will continue to take necessary measures and stay firm in safeguarding territorial sovereignty, and Japan shouldn’t have any illusions about this.
He also stresses that China stands for the proper settlement of this issue through dialogue and consultation.