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Japan Files Protest as Anti-Japanese Demonstrations in China Spread


Two Japanese students have been beaten in Shanghai, and large anti-Japanese demonstrations have taken place in two southern Chinese cities. Japan has lodged a formal protest over a violent demonstration at the Japanese Embassy in Beijing a day earlier.

As demonstrations flared in the Chinese cities of Guanghzou and Shenzen, Japan's foreign minister summoned the Chinese ambassador in Tokyo to protest a violent rally Saturday at Japan's embassy in Beijing.

The two diplomats looked grim afterward, and did not shake hands. Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura says he told Ambassador Wang Yi that Tokyo wants an apology, compensation for damage to the Japanese Embassy, and assurances that Japanese citizens and property in China will not be harmed.

Mr. Machimura says it is a very serious concern that no steps were taken to prevent the destruction of property, and questions why no security measures were in place.

The Chinese began calling for a boycott of Japanese goods after the publication of new Japanese textbooks that are seen as glossing over Japan's brutal early-20th century occupation of China. They also are voicing opposition to Japan's quest for a permanent U.N. Security Council seat, and are demanding Japan give up its claim to the uninhabited Diaoyu islands, which the Japanese control and call the Senkakus.

On Sunday, tens-of-thousands of Chinese were again demonstrating against Japan, this time in Southern China.

Television in Japan and Hong Kong showed young demonstrators in Guangzhou shouting, "Boycott Japanese goods", outside the Japanese consulate. They also stomped on and burned replicas of the Japanese flag. Police could be seen observing the demonstrators, but did not intervene.

Thousands of protesters also gathered for a noisy demonstration outside a Japanese-run supermarket in Shenzhen, the city directly across the border from Hong Kong. No violence was reported in either city.

But in Shanghai, two Japanese college students were treated at a hospital after they were struck in the head with beer mugs and ashtrays in a restaurant, the first reported attack on Japanese individuals since anti-Japanese sentiment flared in China last week.

In the Beijing demonstrations, Saturday, protesters threw rocks and bottles at the Japanese Embassy and the residence of Ambassador Koreshige Anami. Japanese officials say 20 glass panes were shattered at the embassy, while several glass windows were smashed at the ambassador's residence.

Stones also shattered the windows of nearby Japanese restaurants, a Japanese bank branch was pelted with rocks and a billboard featuring Japanese-brand products was damaged.

Estimates of the number of protesters in Beijing ranged from 10,000 to 20,000, a scale of public protest unseen in the communist country in years.

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