China: Diplomat in Tokyo no spy

May 31, 2012 at 4:49 PM

TOKYO, May 31 (UPI) -- Charges that a Chinese diplomat at the country's embassy in Japan was involved in espionage are "groundless," the foreign ministry said Thursday.

The Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun reported the man left Tokyo after police requested that he come in for questioning. He was described as the embassy's first secretary.

In a statement published on China.org.cn, Liu Weimin, a ministry spokesman, said: "The diplomat you are referring to is named Li Chunguang. He is an expert who worked for the official Chinese Academy of Social Sciences before being assigned to China's Embassy in Japan. Now he has left Japan. We think it is groundless to call Li a spy. We will discuss with him the police request and his financial activities in Japan."

Yomiuri Shimbun said there were allegations that Senior Vice Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Nobutaka Tsutsui leaked confidential documents about a program to increase the export of Japanese agricultural products to China to the diplomat. Tsutsui has denied giving him any documents.

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