Tuesday, September 25, 2012

• Taiwan, Japan fire water cannon in disputed island





Sept. 25, 2012: An aerial view shows Japan Coast Guard patrol ship (bottom L) spraying water at fishing boats from Taiwan as Taiwan's Coast Guard vessel (top L) sails near the disputed islands in the East China Sea, known as Senkaku in Japan, Diaoyu in China and Tiaoyutai in Taiwan, in this photo taken by Kyodo. (REUTERS)

BEIJING – Japanese and Taiwanese ships shot water cannon at each other Tuesday in the latest confrontation over tiny islands in the East China Sea, as Japan met with another rival, China, in an effort to tamp down tensions.

About 40 Taiwanese fishing boats and 12 patrol boats entered waters near the islands on Tuesday morning, briefly triggering an exchange of water cannon fire with Japanese coast guard ships. Coast guard officials said the Taiwanese vessels had ignored warnings to get out of their territory, and the Taiwanese ships pulled back after being fired upon.

It was Taiwan's first foray into the waters around the uninhabited islands, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, since the Japanese government purchased some of them from private owners two weeks ago. China, Japan and Taiwan all claim the islands, but they are administered by Tokyo.

The purchase has sparked sometimes violent protests in China and informal boycotts of Japanese products. Many Chinese have canceled vacations to Japan over the dispute. Japanese airline JAL says it plans to cut six flights a day from Japan to Beijing and Shanghai from Oct. 10 to 27 after the canceling of 15,500 seat reservations.
China has also dispatched government marine monitoring vessels to patrol around the islands.

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Zhijun and Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Chikao Kawai, flanked by their aides, held a meeting on the dispute Tuesday at China's Foreign Ministry.

While the talks were under way, China's Cabinet, the State Council, released a white paper via the official Xinhua News Agency on the history of the islands, part of a propaganda blitz aimed at bolstering China's claim.

After the four-hour meeting, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said both sides exchanged views "frankly and deeply" and agreed to continue discussions. He reiterated that "China will never tolerate Japan's unilateral acts which violate China's territorial sovereignty."

Japan's Kyodo news agency said Kawai told reporters at a briefing that the two sides have yet to discuss a date for the next meeting.
"Given the current situation, there were severe parts," Kawai was quoted as saying. "But I can say we both stated our thinking in a frank way."
While both governments appeared publicly to be seeking to calm tensions, gamesmanship around the islands continued Tuesday.
Japanese coast guard officials said their ships fired water cannon after the Taiwanese fishing boats and government patrol boats violated Japanese territorial waters and ignored warnings to move out. After shooting water back, the Taiwanese boats left Japanese waters, they said.

Japanese patrol boats only fired at fishing vessels, said Hideaki Takase, a coast guard official.
"Shooting water cannon at an official vessel is like waging a war against its country," he said.
Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou supports the "protecting Diaoyutai campaign" launched by local fishermen, and offered praise to Taiwan's coast guard for its role in escorting the Taiwanese vessels to the island area, said his spokesman, Fan Chiang Tai-chi.

Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said Tokyo requested, through diplomatic channels, that Taiwan stop violating its waters.
"We will continue to keep our guard up to protect the area," he said. "Japan sticks to our principle that we should resolve the issue while maintaining friendly relations between Japan and Taiwan."

Chinese boats have also briefly entered the waters around the islands in recent weeks, but Japanese coast guard vessels didn't fire water cannon at them. A coast guard official said Chinese vessels usually exit the Japanese waters more quickly after warnings.
About 10 Chinese vessels are still lingering just outside the Japanese waters off the islands. The fleet size has decreased over the last few days, Japanese coast guard officials said.

"Both sides hope to see the escalation in tensions ease up because confrontation does no good to either, but so far we haven't seen any room for compromise," Liang Yunxiang, a Japan expert at Peking University, said Tuesday
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A Japanese Coast Guard patrol ship (C) sprays water at a fishing boat from Taiwan, as Taiwan's Coast Guard vessel (top) sprays water near the disputed islands in the East China Sea, September 25, 2012.

BEIJING — Japan’s deputy foreign minister is in Beijing for consultations with China about a group of hotly contested islands in the East China Sea known as Diaoyu in China and Senkaku by the Japanese. 

As the meetings took place and officials made an effort to ease tensions, the Japanese coast guard fired water cannons at a group of Taiwanese fishing boats, the latest confrontation on the islands. 

Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei decribed the discussions between Vice Foreign Ministers Chikao Kawai and Zhang Zhijun as frank and in depth.

According to Hong, during the meeting, Zhang Zhijun asserted that the Diaoyu Islands and its affiliated islands have been China’s sacred territory since ancient times and that there is ample historical and legal evidence of that. He said with regard to China’s repeated representations on this, Japan has turned a blind eye to these historical facts and international law. He warned Japan to "correct its mistakes with concrete actions."

Earlier, Japan fired water cannons on 40 fishing boats and eight coast guard vessels from Taiwan. Japan’s Defense Minister said managing ship incursions into the waters is a top priority for his country.

Japan has to think of how to deal with the ships arriving from China and Taiwan to the islands, he said, and how to keep Sino-Japanese relations stable.

When asked about the Taiwan boats, Hong said Chinese fishermen have the right to work in the contested waters, adding that the Chinese government is resolute and firm in defending its territorial sovereignty.

The Japanese Coast Guard says the Taiwan fishing vessels have left the disputed waters.

Fishing rights in the waters have long been a source of friction between Japan and Taiwan. Tensions between Japan and China also rose after Japan bought the disputed islands, a source for potential energy resources, from a private owner. The move prompted protests in many Chinese cities.

According to China’s state-run news agency, Xinhua, China’s presumptive next president, Xi Jinping, has urged Japan to stop what he called its “wrong behaviors.” 

Although few authorities expect the dispute to escalate to military confrontation, China sent its first aircraft carrier into service Tuesday, in a move the ministry of defense says will increase the operational strength of the Chinese navy.
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This image from Taiwan's CNA, taken on Sep 25, shows Japan Coast Guard patrol boats alongside a Taiwan Coast Guard boat (C) duelling with water cannon, as they enter Tokyo-controlled waters. (AFP/CNA)

TOKYO: Coastguard vessels from Japan and Taiwan duelled with water cannons on Tuesday after dozens of Taiwanese boats escorted by patrol ships sailed into waters around Tokyo-controlled islands.

Japanese coastguard ships sprayed water at the fishing vessels, footage on national broadcaster NHK showed, with the Taiwanese patrol boats retaliating by directing their own high-pressure hoses at the Japanese ships.

The large-scale breach of what Japan considers sovereign territory -- one of the biggest since WWII -- is the latest escalation in a row over ownership of the islands that pits Tokyo against Beijing and Taipei. The intrusion complicates the already volatile territorial dispute with China. Taiwan has said that officers aboard some of the patrol ships sent to the area are fully-armed elite coastguard personnel. Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura told a press conference that by 9:00am (0000 GMT) eight Taiwanese coastguard and 40 fishing boats were in Japanese waters.

"We have made contact with the Taiwan authorities, and told them that they cannot enter our territorial waters," he said.
A spokesman for Taiwan's coastguard confirmed that nearly 60 boats got close to the islands, some coming within three nautical miles -- well inside the 12-nautical-mile territorial exclusion zone. Japan's coastguard said all vessels left territorial waters a few hours later. The boats are part of a fleet that left Taiwan on Monday, vowing to stake their claim to islands where they say they have ancestral fishing rights.

More than 60 fishing boats flying Taiwanese flags left Suao, a port in northeast Taiwan, at 0700 GMT Monday, with 300 fishermen and 60 reporters on board.

Taiwan's coastguard sent at least 10 patrol boats alongside the vessels. "We'll do everything to protect our fishermen. We do not rule out using force to fight back if Japan were to do so," Wang Chin-wang, head of the Coast Guard Administration, said in parliament. Japan administers the uninhabited, but strategically well-positioned archipelago under the name Senkaku. Beijing says it has owned the islands for centuries and calls them Diaoyu. Taiwan also claims the islands, which lie around 200 kilometres (125 miles) from its coast.

Ownership of the islands has become an important tenet of identity for all three claimants; the possible presence of energy reserves in the nearby seabed adds to the mix.
The last large intrusion into Japanese waters was in 1996, according to a spokesman at the Tokyo headquarters of the Japan Coast Guard. He said at that time, 41 ships carrying activists from Hong Kong and Taiwan entered waters around the islands with the intention of asserting sovereignty.

Chen Chun-sheng, the head of the Suao Fishermen Association, said at the weekend: "Diaoyutai has been our traditional fishing ground for centuries. We pledge to use our lives to protect it or we'd disgrace our ancestors."

Fujimura said Japan was handling Tuesday's situation as delicately as it could. "All in all, we must continue to take utmost caution for policing of the areas surrounding the Senkaku islands. Agencies concerned must continue to closely coordinate their actions," he said. "Japan's position is that, in light of good Japan-Taiwan relations, we must solve the issue peacefully. We wish to respond calmly."

Relations between Japan and China, meanwhile, have scraped long-unseen lows in recent weeks following Tokyo's nationalisation of three of the islands, which it bought from a private Japanese landowner. Several days of sometimes violent protests erupted in cities across China, where Japanese businesses were targeted by rioters.

Japan's coastguard said on Monday that of two of China's maritime surveillance ships had spent seven hours in territorial waters around Uotsurijima, the largest island in the chain. Two fisheries patrol boats briefly also entered the 12-nautical-mile zone around the chain, the coastguard said. Four marine surveillance ships and two fisheries patrol boats were in contiguous waters as of 9:00am Tuesday (0000 GMT), according to the coastguard.

None of the Chinese ships sent to the area belongs to the military. Both types of vessel are government-owned and used to enforce Chinese law in domestic waters.
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UNITED NATIONS: Japan hopes to resolve a territorial dispute with China and Taiwan over a remote island chain peacefully, but regards its sovereignty there as indisputable, officials said on Tuesday.

"We do not believe that there is a dispute to be resolved," said Naoko Saiki, deputy director general for press and public diplomacy at the Japanese foreign ministry, as officials briefed reporters in New York.

"We do not believe there are disputes to be resolved in terms of sovereignty or territory, because in light of historical fact and of international law the Senkaku Islands are an equal part of Japan's territory," she said.

Japan administers the uninhabited but strategically positioned archipelago under the name Senkaku. Beijing says it has owned the islands for centuries and calls them Diaoyu. Taiwan also claims the islands.

Earlier on Tuesday, coast guard vessels from Japan and Taiwan duelled with water cannon off the islands after dozens of Taiwanese boats escorted by patrol ships sailed into waters claimed by Tokyo around the island.

"We do not want to have any war or battles or use of force, so we have to stabilise the situation though dialogue in a peaceful manner in accordance with international law, that's the basic position maintained by Japan," Saiki said.

The Japanese delegation provided reporters with copies of documents that it said supported Tokyo's claim on the islands, including copies of Chinese maps from 1932 and 1960 that mark the islands as Japanese territory.
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TOKYO: The Japanese and Chinese foreign ministers will hold talks in New York on Tuesday on the sidelines of the UN general assembly, reports said, as the two nations remain embroiled in a bitter territorial row.

Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba and his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi are to hold a bilateral meeting in New York late Tuesday, Jiji Press and Kyodo News agencies said, quoting anonymous diplomatic sources.

Relations between the two countries have sunken to new lows as they remain at loggerheads over a group of uninhibited, Tokyo-administered islands in the East China Sea, which is called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China.

The ministerial meeting comes after high-level talks in Beijing on Tuesday, which yielded no sign of reconciliation over the rival claims.

Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Zhijun said Tuesday that China "will absolutely not tolerate any unilateral action taken by the Japanese side that infringes on China's territorial sovereignty", according to a ministry statement. "The Japanese side must abandon any illusion, face up to its erroneous actions and correct them with credible steps," said the statement, released by China after the talks which were attended by Zhang and the Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Chikao Kawai.

The long-running dispute has recently flared up, leading to street protests across China. A number of Japanese companies, including Panasonic and Honda, were forced to temporarily halt production last week, as owners feared for the safety of their staff and property. Chinese government ships sailed into waters around the disputed islands in recent days, but there was no sign of them in the area early Wednesday, according to Japanese coastguards.

Coastguard vessels and fishing boats from Taiwan, which also claims the islands, entered Japanese waters on Tuesday but they were said to be on their way home.
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Taiwanese boats enter waters near disputed islands
by Katie Hunt and Junko Ogura, CNN September 26, 2012



A Japan Coast Guard vessel, right, sprays water against Taiwanese fishing boats in the East China Sea

Hong Kong (CNN) -- Dozens of fishing boats and 12 coast guard ships from Taiwan briefly entered waters close to a disputed island chain in the East China Sea, Japan's Coast Guard said on Tuesday.

The Coast Guard said the vessels had left Japanese territorial waters by noon local time after it issued a warning and fired water cannons at the ships. It said the Taiwan coast guard vessels fired water from high-pressure hoses in return.

It added that 10 Chinese surveillance ships were in the area but none had strayed into waters regarded by Japan as its territory.
The long-running dispute over the islands has flared up in recent months, triggering anti-Japanese protests in China.
Taiwan, China and Japan all claim ownership of the islands.

Taiwan news agency CNA 
http://focustaiwan.tw/ShowNews/WebNews_ ... 1209240023

said that up to 100 fishing boats, escorted by 10 coast guard ships, were making the voyage to assert local fishermen's rights to operate in the waters.
It said the fishing boats came as close as three nautical miles to the islands before turning away.
Wang Jinn-wang, head of Taiwan's Coast Guard Administration, was quoted as saying the flotilla was "the biggest ever action" to support Taiwan's sovereignty over the islands.

CNA said the island chain lies 100 nautical miles northeast of Taiwan.
Earlier this month, the Japanese government bought the disputed islands -- known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China and Taiwan -- from the Japanese family that owned them for 2.05 billion yen (US$26.2 million).

The move infuriated China.
Protests erupted across dozens of Chinese cities, forcing the closure of a number of Japanese businesses and factories as residents railed against anything representative of 

Japan or its people.
Interactive: Disputed islands: Who claims what?
http://edition.cnn.com/interactive/2012 ... le_sidebar

While Taiwan, which Beijing regards as a breakaway province, has long been a claimant in the Diaoyu/Senkaku dispute, the self-governing island has seldom rigorously advanced its claims because of an unwillingness to risk its good relationship with Japan, said Alan Dupont, a strategic analyst at the University of New South Wales in Sydney.

He said Taiwan's decision to become more assertive was a response to recent action taken by China and Japan, as well as concerns over access to fishing and marine resources.

"Under the Law of the Sea, you have to demonstrate an ongoing interest in the islands over a period of time. It rewards countries that assert their claims," he said.
China says its claim to the islands goes back hundreds of years.
Japan says it saw no trace of Chinese control of the islands in an 1885 survey, so formally recognized them as Japanese sovereign territory in 1895.
Japan then sold the islands in 1932 to descendants of the original settlers. The Japanese surrender at the end of World War II in 1945 only served to cloud the issue further.
The islands were administered by the U.S. occupation force after the war. But in 1972, Washington returned them to Japan as part of its withdrawal from Okinawa.
Beijing and Taipei both claim they inherit China's historic sovereignty over the island. Taiwan is governed by the nationalist Kuomintang party that fled to Taiwan after losing to China's communists in 1949.

"The islands get subsumed in the long-running dialogue about reunification," said Dupont.
"It is one situation where strategic objectives are in sync."
Dupont also said Taiwan's protest would be an unwanted complication for the U.S. as it tries to strengthen its relationships in Asia to counter China's rising power.
"It has two of its allies involved in disputes not only with China but also with each other over the same rock."

Dangerous Rocks: Can both sides back off peacefully?
http://edition.cnn.com/2012/09/20/opini ... index.html

MORE STORIES:
:mrgreen: The specks of land at the center of Japan-China islands dispute
:mrgreen: Taiwanese ships clash with Japanese coast guard over disputed islands






TAIPEI: Taiwan's President Ma Ying-jeou on Tuesday voiced support for dozens of Taiwanese boats that entered territorial waters around bitterly disputed East China Sea islands to press Taipei's claim.

His comments came after dozens of Taiwanese fishing boats escorted by coastguard vessels traded water cannon fire with Japanese vessels around the the disputed islands claimed by Taipei, Tokyo and Beijing.

"President Ma supports the fishermen's patriotic actions and acknowledges the coastguard for claiming our sovereignty while protecting the fishermen," his office said in a statement.

"Ma urges the Japanese side to respect our fishermen's rights in their ancestral fishing ground ... and hopes that all parties involved will peacefully resolve the disputes to share the resources in the East China Sea." Japanese coastguard ships sprayed water at the fishing vessels, footage on national broadcaster NHK showed, with the Taiwanese patrol boats retaliating by directing their own high-pressure hoses at the Japanese ships.

Taiwan's coastguard confirmed that nearly 60 boats got close to the islands, some coming within three nautical miles -- well inside the 12-nautical-mile territorial exclusion zone. "We are acting on behalf of Taiwanese fishermen to defend our rights to fishing in the area and to protect our livelihood," said Tu Cheng-yuan, an official at the Suao Fishermen's association which organised the protest. Japan administers the uninhabited, but strategically well-positioned archipelago under the name Senkaku, which is called Diaoyu in Chinese.

The intrusion complicates Japan's already volatile territorial dispute with China. Taiwan has said that officers aboard some of the patrol ships sent to the area are fully-armed elite coastguard personnel.





In dispute over islands, Japan trades water-cannon fire with Taiwan as meets with China

by Associated Press, Published: September 24 | Updated: Tuesday, September 25



Territorial dispute sparks protests in China, Japan: The 81st anniversary of a Japanese invasion and a current territorial dispute involving islands in the East China Sea, called Senkaku by the Japanese and Diaoyu by the Chinese, brought a wave of demonstrations in China.

BEIJING — Japanese and Taiwanese ships shot water cannon at each other Tuesday in the latest confrontation over tiny islands in the East China Sea, as Japan met with another rival, China, in an effort to tamp down tensions.

About 40 Taiwanese fishing boats and 12 patrol boats entered waters near the islands on Tuesday morning, briefly triggering an exchange of water cannon fire with Japanese coast guard ships. Coast guard officials said the Taiwanese vessels had ignored warnings to get out of their territory, and the Taiwanese ships pulled back after being fired upon. It was Taiwan’s first foray into the waters around the uninhabited islands, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, since the Japanese government purchased some of them from private owners two weeks ago. China, Japan and Taiwan all claim the islands, but they are administered by Tokyo. The purchase has sparked sometimes violent protests in China and informal boycotts of Japanese products. Many Chinese have canceled vacations to Japan over the dispute. Japanese airline JAL says it plans to cut six flights a day from Japan to Beijing and Shanghai from Oct. 10 to 27 after the canceling of 15,500 seat reservations.

China has also dispatched government marine monitoring vessels to patrol around the islands. Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Zhijun and Japanese Vice Foreign Minister Chikao Kawai, flanked by their aides, held a meeting on the dispute Tuesday at China’s Foreign Ministry. While the talks were under way, China’s Cabinet, the State Council, released a white paper via the official Xinhua News Agency on the history of the islands, part of a propaganda blitz aimed at bolstering China’s claim. After the four-hour meeting, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said both sides exchanged views “frankly and deeply” and agreed to continue discussions. He reiterated that “China will never tolerate Japan’s unilateral acts which violate China’s territorial sovereignty.”

Deputy press secretary for Japan’s Foreign Ministry, Naoko Saiki, said the two sides agreed to continue contacts but had not scheduled another meeting. Speaking on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in New York, Saiki asserted that Japan’s claim to the islands was beyond dispute. She acknowledged that comprise will be difficult to reach but said they should keep talking to stabilize the situation. She said the presence of Chinese and Taiwanese vessels risks a “miscalculation” or “accident.” “As far as territory or sovereignty is concerned, it’s quite difficult for any party including Japan to make a compromise,” Saiki said. “We don’t want to have any wars or battles or use of force. We have to stabilize the situation through dialogue in a peaceful manner, in accordance with international law.”

While both governments appeared publicly to be seeking to calm tensions, gamesmanship around the islands continued Tuesday. Japanese coast guard officials said their ships fired water cannon after the Taiwanese fishing boats and government patrol boats violated Japanese territorial waters and ignored warnings to move out. After shooting water back, the Taiwanese boats left Japanese waters, they said.

Japanese patrol boats only fired at fishing vessels, said Hideaki Takase, a coast guard official. “Shooting water cannon at an official vessel is like waging a war against its country,” he said. Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou supports the “protecting Diaoyutai campaign” launched by local fishermen, and offered praise to Taiwan’s coast guard for its role in escorting the Taiwanese vessels to the island area, said his spokesman, Fan Chiang Tai-chi. Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said Tokyo requested, through diplomatic channels, that Taiwan stop violating its waters.

“We will continue to keep our guard up to protect the area,” he said. “Japan sticks to our principle that we should resolve the issue while maintaining friendly relations between Japan and Taiwan.” Chinese boats have also briefly entered the waters around the islands in recent weeks, but Japanese coast guard vessels didn’t fire water cannon at them. A coast guard official said Chinese vessels usually exit the Japanese waters more quickly after warnings.

About 10 Chinese vessels are still lingering just outside the Japanese waters off the islands. The fleet size has decreased over the last few days, Japanese coast guard officials said. “Both sides hope to see the escalation in tensions ease up because confrontation does no good to either, but so far we haven’t seen any room for compromise,” Liang Yunxiang, a Japan expert at Peking University, said Tuesday
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Taiwanese boats challenge Japan in island dispute
by Winnie Andrews (video) 25/09/2012 - CHINA - JAPAN - TAIWAN


Sixty Taiwanese vessels faced Japanese water cannons as they entered waters near a disputed island chain claimed by China, Japan and Taiwan early Tuesday. Japan purchased the islands from a private owner last week, sparking protests in China.

A week after Japan’s purchase of the disputed Senkaku-Diaoyu archipelago from a private landowner sparked protests across China, a third regional player has entered the fray.

Sixty Taiwanese coast guard and fishing boats, accompanied by patrol ships Taipei said were carrying fully armed personnel, faced Japanese water cannons early Tuesday as they entered the waters surrounding the islands, which are claimed by China, Japan and Taiwan.

This breach of what Japan considers its sovereign territory adds fuel to the debate that has already been raging between Japan and China in recent weeks over ownership of the islands. Several days of sometimes violent protests have erupted in cities across China, with Japanese firms targeted by rioters.

But Taipei also lays claim to the uninhabited islands, and is seemingly willing to back its convictions with action. Situated in the East China Sea, some 200 kilometres northeast of Taiwan and 400 kilometres west of Okinawa, Taiwan claims that it has ancestral fishing rights to the island chain.

“Taipei surely wants to show that Beijing is not the only power prepared to defend China’s honour on the subject of the islands,” says Valérie Niquet, a researcher at the Asia programme of the Foundation for Strategic Research, a French think tank. “Taiwan is taking a turn to mark its territory.”

“Taipei has always presented itself as the legitimate ruler of China,” she told FRANCE 24. “It does not recognise Beijing’s authority. So it is natural that Taiwan would consider itself as the legal ruler of the islands, which it has claimed as its own since 1971.”

Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura told a press conference Tuesday that Japanese authorities contacted the vessels and told them to leave. "We have made contact with the Taiwanese authorities, and told them that they cannot enter our territorial waters," he said. A spokesman for Taiwan's coastguard confirmed that nearly 60 boats sailed close to the islands, some coming within three nautical miles – well inside the 12-nautical-mile exclusion zone.

Japan's coastguard said all vessels left the area a few hours later. Ownership of the islands has become an important tenet of national identity for all three claimants – and the possible presence of energy reserves in the nearby seabed adds to their allure. Japan administers the uninhabited, but strategically well-positioned archipelago under the name Senkaku. Beijing says it has owned the islands for centuries and calls them the Diaoyu islands.

Fujimura said Japan was handling Tuesday's situation as delicately as it could. "All in all, we must continue to take utmost caution for policing of the areas surrounding the Senkaku islands. Agencies concerned must continue to closely coordinate their actions," he said.

"Japan's position is that, in light of good Japan-Taiwan relations, we must solve the issue peacefully. We wish to respond calmly."