중앙데일리

Seoul talks tough as alleged Japanese report draws fire

Apr 05,2006
Seoul said it would take strong measures if it was true that an internal report by the Japanese Foreign Ministry is indeed saying that President Roh Moo-hyun will not give up his strong anti-Japanese policy in order to make up for his lame duck status and increase his support.
The JoongAng Ilbo reported yesterday on the internal report of the Japanese Foreign Ministry that it had obtained exclusively. Mr. Ban said that the foreign ministry had called in the Japanese Consul General Masatoshi Muto and requested he officially confirm the existence of the report.
“Despite the fact that the strained relations between the two countries are due to Japan’s wrong historical perception, it’s very regrettable that [Japan] interprets this as an attempt by us to use the South Korea-Japan issue for domestic political purposes,” said the minister.
Mr. Ban further said that he felt “rage” as a Korean citizen that the alleged report described Seoul’s claim on the disputed Dokdo Islets, also known as Takeshima in Japan, as an extension of an anti-Japan policy here. “Japan needs to reflect upon where the responsibility of recently strained ties lies,” said Mr. Ban.
An agitated Blue House also said yesterday that it would deal seriously with the report if it is found to exist. “There were a lot of voices calling for strong diplomatic countermeasures if it’s true that is what the report says,” said Choi In-ho, deputy spokesman for the Blue House, after a meeting in the Blue House in which the issue was discussed.
Meanwhile, an official with the Japanese Foreign Ministry declined to comment yesterday when asked by reporters whether such a report existed.
Apart from the territorial dispute, ties between the two countries have been further strained over Japanese textbooks that are viewed here and in China as whitewashing past Japanese atrocities committed during World War II. Last week, Japan’s Ministry of Education “recommended” to textbook publishers that next year’s high school textbook editions include a reference to Dokdo as Japanese territory.


by Brian Lee


dictionary dictionary | 프린트 메일로보내기 내블로그에 저장