Japan tells citizens not to visit China over Labour weekend

Associated Press

Tokyo, April 29:

Japan’s foreign ministry issued a new warning for its citizens travelling to China over the May Day holiday week that kicked off today due to concerns that more anti-Japanese demonstrations could again turn violent. Angry protests have erupted in China in recent weeks over differing views of World War II history, natural gas exploration and Japan’s bid

for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council, sending the two countries’ relations to their lowest level in decades. Tokyo has demanded an apology, but Beijing has blamed Japan’s lack of remorse over its wartime atrocities for causing the troubles. In the latest travel warning, issued late yesterday, Japan’s Foreign Ministry said activists planned more protests on the May 1 Labour Day holiday and on May 4, the date of a 1919 student uprising over a treaty that ceded part of China to Japan, in major cities including Shanghai, Nanjing and Chongqing.

“We worry that (activists) may take advantage of (such memorial events) and hold anti-Japanese demonstrations,” the ministry said in a statement, posted on its Web Site. “If you witness or obtain information on anti-Japanese activities, please do not approach potential venues and use caution not to be involved in unnecessary trouble.” There are signs that anti-Japanese riots are gradually receding, but the possibilities for more riots cannot be ruled out, the ministry said. It issued similar warnings earlier this month. In Shanghai, authorities have been holding meetings with parents at schools, warning them not to let their children join any protests. The city’s state-controlled newspapers have also been running daily commentaries calling for “social stability”. In earlier demonstrations, rioters smashed windows at the Japanese Embassy in Beijing and Consulate in Shanghai and vandalised Japanese restaurants and company buildings. The Chinese government has warned against unauthorised protests.