China won't 'stir up troubles' in Japan dispute: Minister
Published on Apr 8, 2014 2:16 PM
BEIJING (AFP) - Beijing will not act first to "stir up troubles" over island disputes with neighbours, China's defence minister said on Tuesday at a meeting with American counterpart Chuck Hagel.
China and Japan are embroiled in a bitter row over disputed islands in the East China Sea controlled by Tokyo, with the tensions raising concerns about the possibility of a clash between the Asian powers.
"We will not take the initiative to stir up troubles," General Chang Wanquan told a joint news conference in Beijing, a day after officers allowed the US Defence Secretary to tour the country's first aircraft carrier, a rare move by the normally secretive People's Liberation Army.
"China has indisputable sovereignty" over the islands in dispute with Japan, Chang said, calling territorial sovereignty a "core issue" on which "we will make no compromise".
To continue reading, log in if you are a subscriber
Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!