Monday, 17 September 2012

Protesters attack Japanese firms in China, halt operations

Protesters attack Japanese firms in China, halt operations
Clean Media Correspondent

Shanghai, Sept 17 (CMC) The anti-Japan demonstrations in China over disputed islands on Monday took an ugly turn with protesters attacking some of the top Japanese firms, including Panasonic and Canon, hitting flourishing bilateral trade.

China is Japan’s biggest trading partner and their two-way trade last year stood at USD 345 billion.

Panasonic has suspended some of its operations in China after anti-Japan protesters attacked two of its factories.

Canon has also suspended operations at three of its Chinese factories, according to reports.

Also Japanese car manufacturer Toyota which has huge manufacturing facilities in China was affected as its cars came under attack at several places, including in Beijing.

Though one of its showrooms here was damaged in the attacks, Toyota said operations in its factories are normal.

What started as stray protests in front of Japanese diplomatic missions all over China have turned out to be massive demonstrations, something the country has not witnessed for long as public demonstrations are highly regulated in the communist nation.

The protests started after Japan bought the Senkaku islands called Diaoyu islands by China from a private party for USD 26 million ignoring strong opposition from China.

Though China on Sunday appealed to the protesters to be calm, the demonstrations turned violent in several places on Monday.

Asked about the violence, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said today that while protesters should be peaceful they were “provoked by gravely destructive consequences of Japan’s illegal purchase of the Diaoyu Islands, and the responsibility for this should be borne by Japan.”

“The course of developments will depend on whether or not Japan faces up to China’s solemn stance and whether or not it faces up to the calls for justice from the Chinese people and adopts a correct attitude and approach,” Mr. Hong said.

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