The Straits Times
Published on Feb 07, 2013

Japan PM Abe says China dialogue window must stay open


TOKYO (AFP) - Japan's prime minister said on Thursday the "window of dialogue" with China must remain open, even as he reiterated his rebuke to Beijing over a naval confrontation on the high seas.

Mr Shinzo Abe said an incident in which a Chinese frigate locked its weapons-targeting radar on a Japanese warship was "extremely regrettable", as tension grows over the sovereignty of islands in the East China Sea.

"But we will not close the window of dialogue. This is most important," Mr Abe said. "I would like China to return to a more open attitude towards our strategic partnership."

Abe Wednesday had described the Chinese action as "dangerous" and "provocative".