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Digital Archive International History Declassified

August 02, 1978


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    Discussion of the language around the anti-hegemony clause.
    "Cable No. 1502, Ambassador Sato to the Foreign Minister, 'Treaty of Peace and Friendship between Japan and China Negotiations (9th Meeting)'," August 02, 1978, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, 2010-367, Act on Access to Information Held by Administrative Organs. Also available at the Diplomatic Archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. Contributed by Yutaka Kanda and translated by Stephen Mercado.
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Number: (TA) R055469     5476

Primary: Asian Affairs Bureau Director-General

Sent: China, August 2, 1978, 18:50

Received: MOFA, August 2, 1978, 20:16

To: The Foreign Minister      

From: Ambassador Sato

Treaty of Peace and Friendship between Japan and China Negotiations (9th Meeting)

No. 1502 Secret Top Urgent

(Limited Distribution)

Re: Outgoing Telegram No. 1488

On the 2nd, from 3:30 to 4:45 pm, the 9th meeting was held for an hour and 45 minutes (including a break in the meeting of approximately 30 minutes from 4:00). A summary of its main points is as follows (place and participants same as at 8th meeting):

At the start, Vice Minister Han said that today was his turn to host the meeting and that he would like to speak first. He spoke as follows:

(1) At yesterday’s meeting, we listened attentively to the Ambassador’s presentation of the Japanese side’s new draft on the first sentence of the anti-hegemony clause. In short, it is a draft in which the declaration “This treaty is not directed against any particular third country” is rewritten as “This treaty is not directed against any third country.” On hearing this, we felt unable to make any distinction in meaning between the words “any” (note: in Chinese, mou yige) and “any specific.” However, in order to be careful, we examined seriously and patiently the Japanese side’s new draft.

(2) Regrettably, we came to the conclusion that there is nothing new to the draft that the Japanese side has presented and that it is nothing more than the replacing of “any specific” with “any” (note: in Chinese, mou yige) on the basis of the original draft.

(3) The Japanese side may say that it is a bit arbitrary for the Chinese side to speak this way, but I do not at all think so. I recall that the Ambassador said, in his statement of July 24, that it would be fine to replace the words “any specific third country” with “any third country.” Accordingly, it is clear that the conclusion of the Chinese side just now is objective and not at all arbitrary.

(4) In China, there is an old saying: to change form but not content (note: in Chinese, huan tang buhuan yao). The Chinese side positively cannot consider the so-called new draft that the Japanese side has presented. As for the reason, the Chinese side to date has already expressed it any number of times, so I am not going to go over it again.

(5) In short, as a rule, if it is a retreat from the Sino-Japanese Joint Statement, no matter what expression is used or where in the treaty it is written, the Chinese side absolutely cannot agree to it. Accordingly, in regard to the place for the sentence “This treaty is not directed against any third country,” the Japanese side’s idea that it does not insist on its being Sentence 1, Article 3, is also without practical meaning, so please allow me to dispense with further discussion of this.

(6) The Chinese side considers that our negotiations have now reached the moment of truth (note: in Chinese, guanjian shike). In order to advance the treaty negotiations, which have dragged on for three and a half years, and for the sake of an early settlement, the Chinese side here presents an important and constructive draft. I ask for the Japanese side’s serious consideration.

(7) The Chinese side proposes replacing the first sentence of the anti-hegemony clause with “The solidifying and developing of relations of peace and friendship between the the contracting parties on the basis of this treaty is not directed against third countries.”   (note: in Chinese, diyue shuangfang genju bentiaoyue konggu he fazhan heping youhao guanxi bu shi zhendui  disanguo de). However, there is a precondition to this proposal of the Chinese side. In short, it is the deletion of the first clause of the treaty draft that the Japanese side presented on July 22: “This treaty’s objective is the solidifying and developing of relations of peace and friendship between the signatory countries.”

(8) This new draft of the Chinese side is something that we have put forth, having proceeded from a political angle and focused on the overall situation, after giving it repeated examination and serious consideration. At the same time, this draft of the Chinese side fully takes into consideration the Japanese side’s view. The Chinese side has already made its greatest concession. We sincerely hope that this new draft of the Chinese side is able to obtain the Japanese side’s understanding and agreement. Also, in order to have our treaty negotiations succeed smoothly, we sincerely hope that the Japanese side, too,  will similarly, with a positive attitude, make a political decision. Working together, let us ceaselessly develop good-neighborly and friendly relations between our two countries and make a new contribution so that the peoples of our two countries associate in friendship with one another from generation to generation.

2. At this point I proposed a break. After a break of 30 minutes, we resumed the meeting. I then spoke as follows:

(1) It is regrettable that we were unable to obtain your side’s agreement for the new proposal that we put forth yesterday. However, we have just been presented by Vice Minister Han with a new proposal of the Chinese side. We appraise such a positive and constructive attitude of the Chinese side. Your new proposal is a totally new one and includes several important issues, so I would like you to allow us to give it our full consideration. My idea is that we would then reply with the results of our examination at the next meeting.

(2) I think that, by the Japanese and Chinese sides working together over the course of more than ten days of these meetings, we have obtained considerable results. The Japanese and Chinese sides, in fully comprehending where lies the issue’s focus and having repeated and serious discussions on that basis, have proceeded with investigations regarding concrete treaty drafts. Our thinking is that now the phase of discussing various arguments is passing and the phase of seeking a political decision is approaching. I think that we have entered an important phase, so I would like to end here today. We would like to try to examine various things by tomorrow.

3. In response, Vice Minister Han said that he “agreed.” We thus ended today’s meeting. We agreed to hold the next meeting tomorrow from 3:30 pm.




総番号 (TA) R055469  5476  主管

78年  月02日18時50分  中国発

78年08月02日20時16分  本省着  アジア局長

外務大臣殿  佐藤大使


第1502号 極秘 大至急










(6)中国側は、われわれの交渉が今やかんじんな時点(中国語:「関 ケン 時 刻」(関 鎚 時 刻)に達したと考えている。3年半も長引いてきた条約交渉の進展を促し、早期妥結を期するため、中国側はここに1つの重要かつ建設的な案文を提出する。日本側の真けんな検討をお願いする。





(2)われわれは10日間以上にわたる今回の会談において、日中双方の努力により相当大きな成果をあげたものと思う。日本側も中国側も問題のしよう点がどこにあるかをじゆう分理解し、その上で真けんな討論を重ねるとともに、具体的な条約案文についても検討を進めて来た。私たちの考えでは、そろそろ種々の理くつをあげて議論を上下する段階は過ぎて今や政治的に決断を求めるべき段階が近づいているように思う。 重要な段階に入つたと考えるので、本日はここで終了しわれわれも明日までに種々検討して見たいと思う。




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