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Foreign reporters' Nanjing visit highlights Japanese invasion

China last week organized for foreign correspondents to visit east China's Nanjing City, site of an infamous World War II massacre at the hands of Japanese troops in 1937, the Foreign Ministry announced on Monday.

The ministry's International Press Center and the Foreign Affairs Office of the Jiangsu provincial government jointly invited foreign journalists based in China to visit Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu Province, on Feb. 19 and 20, said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying at a daily news briefing.

Their itinerary covered the Memorial Hall of the Victims in Nanjing Massacre by Japanese Invaders, the Nanjing Municipal Archives, the John Rabe and International Safety Zone Memorial Hall of Nanjing University, and the Nanjing Anti-Japanese Aviation Martyrs Memorial Hall, she said.

The event came amid repeated controversial moves from Japan on historical issues, ranging from a Yasukuni Shrine visit by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to attempts to retract the country's apology for wartime sex slavery, which sparked anger from China and the Republic of Korea.

"The journalists saw for themselves the atrocities committed by Japanese troops, historical documents and archives on murders, and had access to interview survivors of the Nanjing Massacre," Hua said.

For a while, Japanese right-wing forces have talked nonsense on historical issues, attempting to deny their military aggression and the Nanjing Massacre, she said, "but plenty of facts have made Japan's ridiculous claims collapse themselves."

If Japan continues attempts at denial and refuses to repent, not only will people not understand the truth but the international community will be justified in concerns about the country's future, Hua said, quoting foreign media commentaries.

History can never be forgotten, she added, urging Japan to face and learn from history so as to look to the future.

[Source: Xinhua, Beijing, 24Feb14]

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