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September 23, 2009

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Stronger China-Japan ties eyed

CHINESE President Hu Jintao and Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama have agreed to advance ties between their two countries, working together for peace and economic stability in Asia, including steps to achieve the removal of nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula.

The two leaders met on Monday in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session.

"I believe that during the tenure of Prime Minister Hatoyama, China-Japan relations will show a new state of more active growth and usher in greater prospects," Hu said.

Hatoyama told Hu that Japan would concentrate on promoting the relationship.And he floated the idea of an East Asian community inspired by the European Union.

"I spoke about the relationship based on fraternal feeling that I would like to build with China," Hatoyama told reporters after the meeting.

"While recognizing one another's differences, we should overcome them and build a relationship of trust," he added. "That would be the focus of the East Asian community I want to build."

Hatoyama, who has said he wants to steer a more independent course from the United States and build closer links with Asia, has long advocated an East Asian community with a single currency, though admitting this would take time to bring about.

The meeting was the first between the two leaders since Hatoyama was elected prime minister on September 16.


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