Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Sunday called on Japan to "steer the course of the bilateral relations from a strategic perspective" after the leaders of the two countries agreed last month to promote the stability and growth of relations.

Wang said in an online speech to a Beijing symposium that it is important for the two Asian neighbors "to avoid backpedaling and flip-flopping, be far-sighted and forward-looking" in their relations after they commemorated the 50th anniversary of the normalization of bilateral ties in September.

On the United States, Wang said Beijing has firmly rejected Washington's "erroneous China policy," under which it has "stubbornly continued to see China as its primary competitor and engage in blatant blockade, suppression and provocation."

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi delivers an online speech to a symposium on international affairs, co-hosted by the China Institute of International Studies and the China Fund of International Studies, in Beijing on Dec. 25, 2022. (Kyodo) ==Kyodo

The foreign minister reiterated that the Taiwan question is "at the very core of China's core interests" and "a red line that must not be crossed" in China-U.S. relations.

In response to U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan in August, made despite China's "stern warnings," Beijing has taken "firm and resolute measures" and "strongly deterred anti-China elements in the United States and the 'Taiwan independence' forces," he said.

China, which views the self-ruled democratic island as its own, held large-scale military drills near Taiwan and halted cooperation with Washington in a range of areas, including climate change and defense exchanges. Those steps "fully demonstrated our iron will in safeguarding national sovereignty and security," he added.

With President Xi Jinping and his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden agreeing in their November summit in Bali, Indonesia to effectively manage differences and advance practical cooperation, Wang urged Washington to "cultivate a favorable atmosphere for communication and cooperation."

In reference to the major easing of China's "zero-COVID" policy earlier this month, Wang said it had "ushered in a new stage in the pandemic response" and indicated the country will relax its strict border controls. "We consider it necessary to further facilitate the flow of personnel between China and other countries," he said.

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