Can she stay? Tokyo seeks talks with China to allow panda cub Xiang Xiang to remain in Japan


The Tokyo Metropolitan Government hopes to negotiate with China to allow Xiang Xiang, a popular female giant panda cub at Ueno Zoo, to stay in Japan longer than 24 months, Gov. Yuriko Koike said Wednesday.

“We’ll hold talks based on our accord” before handing over Xiang Xiang to China, she said.

Any cub born to a giant panda on loan from China must be given to the country 24 months after birth.

Koike said the metropolitan government understands Tokyoites’ desire to have Xiang Xiang stay in Japan for an extended period of time.

Xiang Xiang was born to Shin Shin, a female, and Ri Ri at the zoo on June 12, 2017. The pair arrived in Japan in February 2011 from China.