Chinese ambassador criticises Japan for `following` navy
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Last Updated: Wednesday, April 28, 2010, 15:21
Tokyo: Chinese Ambassador to Japan Cheng Yonghua criticised Japan for 'following' Chinese navy vessels engaged in military exercises on the high seas after Chinese vessel-borne helicopters approached Japanese destroyers.

"Japanese (Self-Defense Forces') ships and patrol planes followed (Chinese vessels) for quite a long time...I think such a thing would be a betrayal of mutual trust " the ambassador told a press conference in Tokyo, speaking in Japanese yesterday.

The ambassador also said that China's naval drills in waters off Japan are conducted "in accordance with international rules" and his country is working to boost transparency regarding its military buildup by releasing a defense white paper and through other means.

Tokyo has lodged a protest through diplomatic channels over what it sees as 'dangerous' approaches by Chinese vessel-borne helicopters toward Japanese destroyers, which were deployed for surveillance of Chinese vessels.

The incidents took place on April 8 and April 21, when the vessels were sailing in the East China Sea.

While China has explained to Japan that the approaches were a "necessary defense measure" in response to Japanese surveillance activities, Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada said Friday that he was "not convinced" by the explanation. PTI

First Published: Wednesday, April 28, 2010, 15:21

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