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Xi Reply to Abe Shrine Visit Is Next Test for Bilateral Ties

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s reaction to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to a shrine that honors wartime leaders will determine whether Asia’s top two economies come closer to a hostile incident.

Xi’s options after Abe’s appearance yesterday at Yasukuni shrine -- the first by a sitting prime minister since 2006 -- range from sticking with verbal condemnation to unleashing public anti-Japanese protests to stepping up naval or air challenges against Japan’s forces in the East China Sea.