Chinese embassy in Canberra accuses Japanese ambassador of glorifying WWII militarism

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Japan’s ambassador to Australia Shingo Yamagami addresses the National Press Club in Canberra, Australia, Wednesday, July 21, 2021. Japan’s ambassador to Australia Shingo Yamagami addresses the National Press Club in Canberra, Australia, Wednesday, July 21, 2021. (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Australian media report the Chinese embassy in Canberra has accused Japan’s ambassador to Australia, Yamagami Shingo, of glorifying his nation’s militarist past while attending an event in the nation’s capital.

The Chinese embassy added that its own ambassador, Cheng Jingye, (成競業) stridently “excoriated” Yamagami there on the spot. However, Japan’s embassy firmly refuted the accusations that Yamagami had ever praised Japan’s World War II legacy and also said the two ambassadors never engaged in any sort of verbal confrontation, according to an ABC report.

The ambassadorial spat was ignited by a statement posted on the Chinese embassy’s website shortly after Yamagami delivered a recent speech at Australia’s National Press Club. At the event, the Japanese ambassador praised Canberra’s tough stance toward Beijing, saying it had done a better job of dealing with China than Japan, adding “[Australia] faced up to tremendous pressure in a consistent, principled and resilient manner.”

The Chinese embassy released the following statement the next day:

“At a diplomatic function in Canberra not long ago [Japan’s ambassador] attempted blatantly to whitewash, and even beautify, the brutal aggression and atrocities by the Japanese militarists in World War II…It is … natural he was excoriated by the Chinese ambassador on the spot.”

However, China’s Cheng did not attend the same event at the National Press Club, so the alleged showdown between the diplomats could not have occurred there. Yamagami and Cheng did both speak at a Holocaust memorial event hosted by the Israeli embassy in April though, leading to speculation by the ABC that this was the event the Chinese embassy was referring to.

Yet a Japanese embassy spokesperson stated Yamagami spoke only on the Holocaust at the function, refuting the validity of the Chinese portrayal of events.

The diplomatic tussle comes at a time when Tokyo is bolstering its strategic partnership with Canberra, while ties with Beijing continue to sour. At the National Press Club event, Yamagami said Japan-Australia relations had undergone an “astonishing” transformation and the two countries were moving ever closer together.

He went on to state that “Australia, Japan, United States, like-minded countries have to get together, join forces to address these challenges caused by the rise of this emerging power.” Before taking up his post at Canberra, Yamagami was head of the intelligence branch within the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and in April said Japan aims to join the Anglophone world’s Five Eyes intelligence-sharing network.

Should this ‘Five Eyes-plus’ arrangement come to fruition, it would make Japan one of the world’s leading intelligence-gathering countries alongside its Western counterparts and further deepen the strategic cooperation among QUAD partners within the broader Indo-Pacific strategic construct.

Armenia’s new envoy to the US awarded the diplomatic rank of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary

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Armenia’s new envoy to the US awarded the diplomatic rank of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary

By the decree of the President of the Republic of Armenia Armen Sarkissian, the Ambassador of the Republic of Armenia to the United States Lilit Makunts has been awarded the diplomatic rank of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.

The decree was published on the official website of the President.

By an August 2 decree of the President of the Republic of Armenia, Lilit Makunts was appointed Armenia’s Ambassador to the US.

Accor Ambassador Korea Opens First Resort in Jeju

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Mercure Ambassador Jeju opened as the first Accor Ambassador property in the famous Jeju Island and marks the eighth city of Accor Ambassador’s expansion across the country, demonstrating the continued commitment to increasing the group’s presence in the region.

Deeply connected with the destination and surroundings, the Mercure brand is renowned for providing travellers with locally-rooted design and decor, creating authentic and inspiring settings. Surrounded by Gotjawal, Jeju’s unique forest created on a lava region, Mercure Ambassador Jeju overlooks the beautiful Hallasan and Sanbangsan mountain views and features an award-winning 18-hole golf course.

“We are excited to open our first resort in Jeju island, marking our continued expansion in South Korea. The island of Jeju is renowned for its incredible sceneries, hiking trails, historical sites, great beaches and local seafood. Mercure Ambassador Jeju is deeply rooted within its lush and natural surroundings and will offer authentic local experiences. The resort will become a great place for families, nature and sports lovers, including golfers, to stay and to enjoy local hospitality,” said Vincent Lelay, Vice President of Operations for South Korea.

The resort features 71 spacious guestrooms with a beautiful view of Jeju’s nature. An all-day-dining restaurant will satisfy travellers and golfers with local flavours. The property offers meeting space that can be conducted in intimate settings, with indoor and outdoor activities. Leisure facilities will include an infinity swimming pool, fitness centre, and outdoor driving ranges. A newly-built infinity pool, along with a trendy pool bar and cabanas, invite local and international travellers to indulge and relax.

Located just 30 minutes drive from Jeju International Airport, and 10 minutes by car to Jungmun Tourist Complex, the resort is easily accessible to various attraction sites for island exploration.

Samuel Jin, the General Manager, said, “Jeju Island is a triple-crowned UNESCO destination and one of the most beloved destinations in the country. Mercure Ambassador Jeju is perfectly located in Gotjawal, commonly proclaimed as the ’lungs of Jeju’, with its beautiful 18-hole golf course. Guests can look forward to locally-inspired hospitality, complete with a diverse array of activities and dining options.”

To celebrate the opening, the hotel offers a special room rate, starting from KRW 230,000, exclusive of 10% VAT. The benefit of free access to a swimming pool and fitness centre is included.

Mercure Ambassador Jeju will join a collection of over 810 Mercure hotel addresses globally across 62 countries.