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Wang nominated as China foreign minister—parliament


04:30 PM March 16th, 2013

March 16th, 2013 04:30 PM

BEIJING—China’s parliament on Saturday announced Wang Yi, a former ambassador to Japan and currently in charge of Taiwan affairs, had been nominated as the country’s new foreign minister.

Wang replaces Yang Jiechi, who has served since 2007. Yang was nominated to the State Council, according to an announcement by the National People’s Congress, China’s rubberstamp parliament.

The changes are part of a broad revamp of personnel as China concludes a once-a-decade leadership transition that saw Communist party chief Xi Jinping elected the president on Thursday.

The change at the top of the foreign ministry comes at a time of heightened tensions with Japan over uninhabited islands in the East China Sea, claimed by both countries.

Wang, 59, served as ambassador to Japan from 2004 to 2007 and was also a diplomat in China’s embassy in Tokyo from 1989 to 1994. He reportedly speaks Japanese.

He has been in charge of Taiwan affairs on the State Council since 2008.

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