March 5, 2020 / 7:47 AM / a month ago

Chinese President Xi's Japan visit delayed due to coronavirus

FILE PHOTO: Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, December 23, 2019. Noel Celis/Pool via REUTERS

TOKYO (Reuters) - Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to Japan has been postponed because both countries have agreed to prioritise the fight against the coronavirus outbreak, Japan’s top government spokesman said on Thursday.

The Asian neighbours agreed the visit would take place at a better time and that a new itinerary would be arranged, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference.

Suga said the delay in Xi’s visit, which had been originally planned for early April, would not affect Japan-China relations.

Reporting by Chris Gallagher; Editing by Himani Sarkar

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