China destroyer to make first visit to Japan-NHK

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TOKYO, Nov 3 (Reuters) A Chinese naval destroyer will make the first ever visit to Japan later this month, NHK television said today, as part of moves to improve ties between the rivals.

The two countries agreed to an exchange of visits by naval ships in 2000, but the proposal failed to take off as relations came under strain over various issues including territorial disputes, energy and Japan's wartime past.

The issue was again discussed between Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and then Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during the Chinese leader's landmark visit to Japan in April.

Wen's visit was aimed at building on a fledgling detente between the two countries.

NHK said the Chinese destroyer would be in Tokyo from November 28 to December 2, citing unnamed sources close to the matter.

REUTERS CS ND1428

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