Chinese Communist Party Chairman Hua Guofeng indicated today that China welcomed a buildup of Japan's military strength.
Hua, who arrived here yesterday for a state visit, was being briefed by Japanese Prime Minister Masayoshi Ohira on the latter's visit to Washington earlier this month, Japan, Ohira said, would respond to United States requests for increased defense spending "independently and in a manner satisfactory to the people," according to government sources. Hua responded that he did not wish to interfere in Japan's internal affairs, but he thought it "a matter of course" for Japan to increase its defense spending.
[Hua said in a speech televised throughout Japan Thursday that China has committed itself to development of strategic weapons to "break the nuclear stranglehold of the super-powers," Associated Press reported. He said China, which launched two intercontinental ballistic missiles last week, is "engaged in building and strengthening national defense capabilities to the extent our power permits."]
Senior Chinese officials, including Hua, have issued emphatic endorsements of Japanese rearmament in recent weeks, and would like military cooperation with both Tokyo and Washington to annoy and frighten the Soviet Union. But Hua was more tactful in Tokyo, to avoid embarrassing his hosts, and knowing that China's aims are being achieved. For, while professing "friendship with everyone" including Moscow, Japan has become entangled in China's anti-Soviet web by the deepening association and cooperation between the two countries.
Japan signed a peace and friendship treaty with China two years ago, while talks on a similar pact with the Soviet Union have constantly foundered over a territorial dispute. Japan and China have signed a long-term trade agreement, and a large supply of Japanese financial assistance is in the pipeline for Chinese modernization projects.
In their second round of talks today, Ohira promised Hua that Japan would continue supplying credits, and expressed an interest in a stable supply of Chinese oil -- one of the carrots Peking keeps dangling before Japan.
The two countries moved still closer with the signing today of an agreement on scientific and technological cooperation. Under the agreement, signed between Japanese Foreign Minister Saburo Okita and his Chinese counterpart Huang Hua, a committee will be set up to promote exchange visits by scientists and technicians, and joint research projects and the exchange of information on science and technology.