Still no congratulations from China on 2020 Games: Japan
AFPTOKYO--Japan has received a raft of messages on its successful bid to host the 2020 Olympics but a goodwill message from China has been conspicuously absent, the government said Tuesday.
September 11, 2013, 12:11 am TWN
The United States, South Korea and many other Asia-Pacific nations have offered congratulations to Japan since the International Olympic Committee on Saturday chose Tokyo to host the summer Games over Istanbul and Madrid.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga, however, noted Tuesday that no official message from Beijing had been forthcoming.
“I am sure that, as a matter of course, (China) welcomes our hosting of the Olympics, which is a sports festival,” Suga said, stressing that Tokyo supported Beijing when the Chinese capital hosted the 2008 Olympics.
The two countries have been at loggerheads over the last year about the sovereignty of a small group of islands in the East China Sea.
They also have regular disputes over interpretations of their sometimes-brutal shared history, which Beijing says Tokyo does not fully acknowledge and which Tokyo says Beijing dwells on.
On Monday, China's Global Times offered Tokyo heavily qualified congratulations for winning the right to host the 2020 Olympics, saying the event's success would depend on Japan recognizing its World War II aggression.
“Japan should learn how to behave,” the Chinese newspaper said in an editorial that focused mostly on Beijing's longstanding diplomatic rivalry with Tokyo.
The paper lamented Japan's “lousy job in reflecting its misdeeds in World War II,” specifically pointing to visits by senior figures to the controversial Yasukuni Shrine, where the country's war dead — including high-ranking war criminals — are enshrined.
If visits continued, the editorial said, the world would reconsider whether “a country which has been paying high tribute to brutal war criminals for years is qualified to host such an event that advocates peace and harmony.”