BEIJING, Sept. 1 (UPI) -- China's Foreign Ministry slammed Tokyo for criticizing U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's decision to attend China's Victory Day parade, a day after Ban's office stated it rejected Japanese criticism.
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying strongly condemned the Japanese view that the U.N. chief should refrain from attending historical events and called the response an offensive provocation, South Korean news agency Yonhap reported Tuesday.
Hua also said she hoped Japan would show deep remorse in a sincere and humble manner about its past militarism and aggressions, South Korean news network YTN reported.
Ban's office had said it refutes Japanese remarks about the U.N. secretary general's plans to attend the event and added it was important to recognize China's wartime sacrifice, The Guardian reported.
Japan has voiced "strong displeasure" over Ban's attendance, according to the U.N. office, and Japan's Asahi Shimbun stated in an editorial the Xi Jinping administration's "approach to ruling the nation is reminiscent of the totalitarianism that raged in the world until the end of the war 70 years ago."
Tokyo has said the U.N. should remain neutral on the commemoration of an event known in China as the Chinese People's War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, but Chinese officials have said the event will not be used to vilify Japan.
"I'd like to reaffirm that the commemorations do not target any specific country, neither today's Japan nor the Japanese people in general," said Zhang Ming, China's deputy foreign minister.
Beijing also defended its invitation to Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir, the president of Sudan. Al-Bashir has been indicted by the International Criminal Court over war crimes and crimes against humanity in 2009, and genocide charges in 2010 that all relate to conflict in Sudan's Darfur region.
Hua said Sudan and other nations of Africa contributed to the global struggle against fascism, and that China does not have an obligation to ban Al-Bashir as Beijing is not a signatory to the ICC.