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China President Xi highlights Japan militarist past in Seoul

Published on Jul 4, 2014 12:46 PM
Chinese President Xi Jinping gives a lecture at Seoul National University in Seoul on July 4, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL (AFP) - Chinese President Xi Jinping stressed the joint suffering of China and South Korea under Japanese militarism during a speech in Seoul on Friday that came days after Tokyo announced a landmark shift in military policy.

"In the first half of the 20th century, Japanese militarists carried out barbarous wars of aggression against China and Korea, swallowing up Korea and occupying half of the Chinese mainland," Xi said in an address at Seoul National University.

"When the war against Japan was at its highest pitch, the Chinese and Korean people shared their suffering and helped each other with sweat and blood," he added.

Xi's speech came on the second and last day of his state trip to South Korea which had been flagged as a snub to ally North Korea because of his decision to visit Seoul before Pyongyang.

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