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SHANGHAI/BEIJING (Reuters) - China on Thursday rejected remarks by former Japanese prime minister Yasuo Fukuda that Beijing had expressed willingness to improve ties between Asia's two biggest economies, and said there was "no change" in its policy on Tokyo. Relations between China and Japan have been frayed by rows over the legacy of Japan's wartime militarism, a territorial feud over tiny islands in the East China Sea, and mutual distrust over defense policies. China's foreign ministry was asked to respond to a speech on Wednesday in which Fukuda described his recent meetings with Chinese leaders, and added that both sides had shown the same sense of crisis over Sino-Japanese ties. "Japan must face up to reality, show sincerity, take concrete actions and make efforts to eliminate political obstacles that affect the development of bilateral relations," Qin added, in a statement on the foreign ministry's website.
ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Recep Tayyip Erdogan is set to take the oath of office as Turkey's first popularly elected president on Thursday, a position that will keep him in the nation's driving seat for at least another five years.
By Leila Abboud and Lisa Jucca PARIS/MILAN (Reuters) - The battle over Brazil's telecoms market intensified on Thursday as European competitors Telecom Italia and Telefonica made rival offers for Vivendi's Brazilian broadband business GVT. Vivendi, which will examine the bids at a Thursday board meeting, must now choose whether to exit its last remaining telecom business after selling off its French and Moroccan mobile operations to focus more on media. French tycoon Vincent Bollore, who is Vivendi's chairman and largest shareholder, has led the talks with Telefonica and Telecom Italia in recent weeks and his view will weigh heavily in the outcome. Spain's Telefonica said it had raised a previous 6.7 billion euro bid for GVT to 7.45 billion euros ($9.84 billion), increasing the cash component of the initial offer made at the start of August.