Japan brushes off China 'troublemaker' criticism
TOKYO (AFP) - Japan on Thursday brushed off a bristling attack in which a Chinese diplomat branded Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a "troublemaker", saying Beijing's sentiment is inaccurate and ignores the facts.
The rebuttal came after China's envoy to the African Union fired the latest salvo in an increasingly bitter war of words between Asia's two largest economies with a dramatic display of pictures he said showed the results of Japanese atrocities during World War II.
In a press conference held the day after Mr Abe wrapped up a landmark African tour aimed at boosting Japan's presence in Africa, Ambassador Xie Xiaoyan accused him of trying to undermine Beijing's own diplomatic reach.
"Abe has become the biggest troublemaker in Asia," Mr Xie, who is also China's ambassador to Ethiopia, told reporters. "He has worked hard to portray China as a threat, aiming to sow discord, raising regional tensions and so creating a convenient excuse for the resurrection of Japanese militarism," the ambassador said at the news conference.