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Shinzo Abe

China's respect for Abe was 'greatest tribute': ex-U.S. diplomat

Michael Green reflects on former Japanese prime minister at Mount Fuji Dialogue

Michael Green speaks of Shinzo Abe's "greatest tribute" from Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Mount Fuji Dialogue on Oct. 22. (Photo by Kosuke Imamura)

TOKYO -- On New Year's Day of 2014, then-Chinese Ambassador to the U.K. Liu Xiaoming wrote an op-ed in the Telegraph in which he said militarism in Japan was like the haunting presence of Lord Voldemort, the dark wizard of the Harry Potter series, and that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was fueling such sentiments by visiting the controversial Yasukuni Shrine.

Yet when Abe was assassinated in July, Chinese President Xi Jinping sent a message to Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida saying, "Abe made efforts to improve China-Japan relations during his time in office and contributed positively to this endeavor."

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