China media: Sino-Japanese relations

Japanese Prime Minister and ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) leader Shinzo Abe during a press conference at the LDP headquarters in Tokyo on 22 July 2013 Sino-Japanese relations have become strained under Mr Abe, says Beijing

State media are sceptical of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's desire to mend ties strained by territorial disputes.

"This sounds like nothing but cliche," says the Global Times, in response to Mr Abe's calls on Monday for high-level talks with China in his first press conference after his party's upper house election win.

"We shouldn't expect any detente in the bilateral relationship during his term... We advise Chinese leaders not to meet Abe for a long time," the newspaper adds.

"The key to improving Sino-Japanese relations lies in whether Mr Abe shows sincerity and takes concrete actions to correct words and deeds that have maliciously harmed Sino-Japanese friendship... 'Saying one thing and doing another' is Mr Abe's consistent style," says the Wen Wei Po, a Beijing-backed Hong Kong newspaper.

Many commentators are watching to see whether Mr Abe visits the Yasukuni Shrine for the war dead, where Japanese leaders convicted as war criminals are also honoured, on the 15 August anniversary of Japan's defeat in World War II.

"Will there be visits to the Yasukuni Shrine on this day? In the fully vigilant eyes of the whole world, Abe faces a highly symbolic choice," concludes the People's Daily Overseas Edition.

Meanwhile, the Global Times says the closure of the Chinese embassy in Manila's visa section on Wednesday "for security reasons" is linked with planned anti-Chinese protests outside the embassy and other parts of the world on the same day.

'Acts of revenge'

Amid public sympathy for a wheelchair-bound petitioner who set off a bomb at Beijing's international airport on Saturday, the China Youth Daily and other media discourage support for "acts of revenge against society".

On Monday, a knife-wielding man with a history of psychosis reportedly killed a woman and injured three people, including a toddler, in a Carrefour supermarket in Beijing. The man is in custody and the motives of the attack are still under investigation.

"Every time an extreme incident occurs, people on the internet will create sympathy for crimes of revenge against society and even publicly applaud them... This is a very dangerous trend in public opinion. If this trend continues, China's moral dyke against perpetrators of violence will collapse," warns the Global Times.

State media are hitting back at European and US calls for Beijing to introduce further stimulus measures to prevent its slowing growth affecting economic recovery in other countries.

The Beijing News says no stimulus measures are needed as a lower limit of no less than 7% for China's annual economic growth is still within a "reasonable range".

"Europe and the US are too selfish in trying to dupe China into 'accelerating'... China's economy achieved 7.6% growth in the first half of this year. This was hard-won and a clear contribution to world economic growth," says a front-page commentary by Shi Jianxun, an economics professor at Shanghai's Tongji University, in the People's Daily Overseas Edition.

Hong Kong media are speculating on Jiang Zemin's praise for President Xi Jinping during the retired leader's meeting with former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger on 3 July in Shanghai.

The news was publicised by state media on Monday, just as Chinese leaders are set to hold their annual closed-door policy meeting at the beach resort of Beidaihe.

"Jiang's latest appearance and the high-profile report are designed to serve as a deliberate reminder to people of the political influence that he still exerts within the leadership," Beijing-based political affairs analyst Zhang Lifan tells the South China Morning Post.

However, Beijing political scientist Chen Ziming tells Ming Pao that it is "highly unusual" for Mr Jiang to speak publically on sensitive issues such as Mr Xi's handling of recent violence in Xinjiang.

He believes that such praise is more likely to be an "indirect criticism" of Mr Xi and a sign of "meddling".

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