China and Japan began three days of strategic talks in Beijing yesterday. Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Shotaro Yachi and Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Dai Bingguo led the talks, which would deal with gas exploration rights in the East China Sea, among other issues, according to Japan's Kyodo news agency. The meeting is expected to prepare both sides for Premier Wen Jiabao's visit to Japan in the spring. Previously, Japan and China's strained relationship was aggravated by former Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visits to the Yasukuni shrine, a memorial that houses war criminals among other war dead.
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