Opinion: Island dispute

The Asahi Shimbun, Tokyo, on Japan and the Senkaku Islands' dispute with China, from Oct. 17, 2012:

Foreign Minister Koichiro Genba left for France, Britain and Germany on Oct. 15 to discuss defense cooperation and an economic partnership agreement with the European Union. He will also take the opportunity to explain Japan's position on the Senkaku Islands to gain their understanding.

On this issue, Japan maintains that a territorial dispute does not exist. This is why Japan until now had not really bothered to explain the issue in any depth to overseas governments and organizations.

But after the Japanese government's purchase of some of the islands in the East China Sea on Sept. 11, China began ratcheting up its claim of sovereignty ...

Chinese surveillance vessels have begun to frequently intrude on Japan's territorial waters around the Senkakus. Seven Chinese naval vessels, including destroyers, passed the contiguous zones near Yonagunijima island in Okinawa Prefecture on Oct. 16.

While searching for ways to resolve the issue with China, the Japanese government needs to show the international community that it is trying to deal with the situation calmly without reacting to provocations. ...

Online:

http://ajw.asahi.com

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