Oct 25, 2012
Japan’s Coast Guard said the four Chinese surveillance ships were spotted within a 12-nautical mile zone that Tokyo considers its territorial waters near one of the disputed islands in the East China Sea early Thursday morning.
The ships refused to leave, saying the area was Chinese territory, according to Atsushi Takahashi, a spokesman for the Coast Guard’s headquarters in Okinawa, which has jurisdiction over the islands. He said it was the first time Chinese ships had entered the territorial waters since Oct. 3.
Japan’s Foreign Ministry lodged a strong protest with China’s ambassador in Tokyo.
The naval activity near the uninhabited islands called the Senkaku in Japan and the Diaoyu in China comes after officials from Japan and China held talks last week in Shanghai to discuss the dispute. The dispute has heightened tensions between the nations in recent months.
This article was posted: Thursday, October 25, 2012 at 2:43 am