Beijing: China Monday hoped Japan`s incoming government would "appropriately address" all bilateral issues, even as Beijing expressed high concern over Tokyo`s future direction under right-wing leader Shinzo Abe, who has vowed to pursue a tough line on maritime disputes with the communist giant.
China watched warily as Japan`s volatile political situation for the first time showed signs of stability to handle the raging maritime dispute over the contested islands in the East China Sea.
"We are highly concerned about which direction Japan will take (under the Shinzo Abe-led Liberal Democratic Party)," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told reporters while reacting cautiously to LDP`s landslide victory in Japan.
Firing the first salvo, after his Liberal Democratic Party`s victory Abe, who is expected to become Prime Minister has vowed to take a tough stance in territorial disputes with China saying that he wanted to "stop the challenge" from Beijing over a chain of islands claimed by both countries.
Abe was quoted as saying that the islands, which China is making a strong claim were Japan`s "inherent territory" and it was his party`s objective was "to stop the challenge" from China.
"We don`t intend to worsen relations between Japan and China," he said, adding that both sides "need to share the recognition that having good relations is in the national interests of both countries".
"China lacks this recognition a little bit. I want them to think anew about mutually beneficial strategic relations," BBC quoted him as saying.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said, "The Chinese side attaches importance to the direction of Japan`s China policy. We hope Japan will deeply understand and appropriately address difficulties and issues between the two nations, and advance bilateral ties in a healthy and stable way in line with the principles and spirit established in the four China-Japan political documents."
"As important neighbours, China and Japan reached consensus on building a strategic and mutually beneficial relationship in 2006," she said.
Meanwhile, we also pay great attention to the direction of Japan`s development, Hua said.
"(We) hope Japan will continue to follow the path of peaceful development and play a constructive role in regional peace, stability and development," Hua said.
The political instability in Japan for the past three years under the outgoing Democratic Party of Japan with Prime Minister changing all most every year has enabled China to consolidate its hold on the islands called as Senkakus by Japan and Diaoyu by China.
Japan which had the administrative control over the islands for decades could barely retain it now as Chinese ships regularly patrolled the areas challenging the Japanese Coast Guard control.
Beijing even sent a maritime patrol plane three days ago to the areas for the first time.
The islands dispute has become a major rallying point for the China`s ruling Communist Party as it made full use of it in the run up its last month`s leadership change in which Xi Jinping was elected as the new leader for the next 10 years.