It looks as though I was too cynical back in January. The kids are really arriving next month.
Goodness knows what good 10 days in Japan will do.
Who will be their hosts--i.e. who is certified 100% politically safe and has sufficient living space to share with these kids? Will they be left alone with these families?
The Chinese government's relations with Japan are handled by the Asian and African Affairs Division?
China-Japan student exchange programme to help improve ties
China Daily Online
April 13, 2006 - China and Japan have agreed to strengthen educational co-operation and cultural exchanges by sending more young people to visit each other's nation.
The Ministry of Education told China Daily yesterday that starting this year, China would send 1,250 senior middle school students to Japan each year.
The same number of Japanese students will also come to China annually, to gain a better understanding of the country.
About 1,100 of the total 1,250 students will stay in Japan for 10 days, and others will undertake yearly or half-yearly study programmes, said Xue Yanqing, director of the Asian and African Affairs division with the ministry's international co-operation and exchanges department.
"We hope young people from both countries can gain a true understanding of modern China and Japan, so that misunderstandings and prejudice brought about from history can be cleared up," he said.
The first group of 200 students to visit Japan will set out in May and are being hosted by the Tokyo-based Japan-China Friendship Centre.
Students will visit three to four cities in 10 days and visit houses of local residents to experience a day in the life of an average Japanese person.
The ministry said all 200 students had been chosen from senior high schools nationwide.
Preferential policies will be given to remote areas in recommending students.
Hmmmm...Aso Taro on Line One...or Edem Kodjo on Line Two...decisions, decisions...
I am intrigued by the "preferential policies will be given to remote areas in recommending students" claim. If it is not just rhetoric, it sounds like absolutely the most fantastically dangerous idea the government of China could have ever dreamed up.