“You can never become a Westerner,” said Wang Yi, the head of Beijing’s Foreign Affairs Commission and former foreign minister.
“Chinese, Japanese, and Koreans are all viewed as ‘Asians’ by Americans. They cannot tell the differences between us, and it’s the same in Europe.”
Mr. Wang said Japan, South Korea, and China “need to remember where we came from,” urging them to “revitalize Asia.”
He went on to take an apparent jab at Washington: “Some major countries outside the region deliberately exaggerate ideological differences.”
Tokyo and Seoul both maintain partnerships with the U.S. that focus on countering Chinese and North Korean aggression. Washington has over 80,000 troops deployed across the two nations and the three nations have held a number of joint military drills.
Beyond that, Japan and South Korea have worked to fix their relations this year and have jointly voiced their national security interests in the Taiwan Strait.