17:12 GMT +321 March 2019
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    Chinese national flag (C) and a Japanese national flag (L) (File)

    China, Japan to Launch System Preventing Sea, Air Incidents

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    BEIJING (Sputnik) - Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman Geng Shuang confirmed on Monday that Beijing and Tokyo were preparing for the official launch of a communication mechanism to prevent incidents at sea and in the air.

    "China and Japan share the common goal of settling crises in the East China Sea. The establishment of such a mechanism will help to strengthen mutual trust. The relevant departments of the two countries are currently engaged in preparations for the official launch of this mechanism," Geng Shuang said at a briefing, commenting on relevant media reports.

    He added that the mechanism involves communication between ships and aircraft of the two countries, and does not specify the geographical area in which it will be applied.

    READ MORE: China, Japan, S Korea Summit to Contribute to Regional Peace — Beijing

    At the same time, the agency reported citing sources that China and Japan would not mention the disputed uninhabited Senkaku (Diaoyu) Islands in the East China Sea, if agreed to launch a communication mechanism, despite China's push for mentioning these islands, which are also claimed by the Taiwan authorities.

    Earlier in the day, Japan's Kyodo agency reported that the leaders of China and Japan should agree in the near future on the establishment of a bilateral communication mechanism to prevent incidents at sea and in the air amid continued territorial disputes. The agreement is expected to be signed during the upcoming negotiations in Tokyo between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on the sidelines of the tripartite summit of the leaders of the two countries and South Korean President Moon Jae-in scheduled for May 9.

    The Senkaku archipelago dispute between Japan and China aggravated in 2012, when the Japanese government bought from a private Japanese owner three of the five islands that Beijing regards as Chinese territory.


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