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Chinese and Japanese Leaders Discuss Trade, Climate and Taiwan བོད་སྐད།


Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda and his Chinese counterpart, Wen Jiabao, have held talks in China, the latest effort by the Asian rivals and World War Two foes to boost ties and mend relations.

During two-and-half hours of meetings Friday in Beijing, the two discussed trade, climate change and their long-running and unresolved dispute over maritime gas fields.

Eleven rounds of negotiations over the gas fields since 2004 have made little progress, but both Mr. Wen and Mr. Fukuda were upbeat about today's discussions.

Acknowledging past aggression, Mr. Fukuda said Japan will reflect on its war-time history in order to avoid mistakes in the future. He made the remarks in a speech at China's prominent Peking University, broadcast live on Chinese television.

On the issue of Taiwan, Mr. Wen welcomed the Japanese leader's opposition to the island's bid for independence.

Mr. Fukuda's trip to China is the second by a Japanese leader in some 15 months and comes as ties are warming between the two countries.

His predecessor, former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe began taking steps to mend ties with China following years of troubled ties while Junichiro Koizumi was in office. Mr. Koizumi made several visits to Tokyo's Yasukuni shrine, enraging China.

Japan's critics see the war shrine as a symbol of the country's past militarism.

Mr. Fukuda's father, the late Prime Minister Takeo Fukuda, signed a landmark friendship treaty with China in 1978. He has called for Japan to be humble about its past and has pledged not to visit the shrine.

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