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Resolution Challenges China's Territorial Sovereignty

The resolution passed last Friday by parliament of Ishigaki City, south Japan's Okinawa Prefecture, and requires the mayor and parliament members to go to China's Diaoyu Islands to make so-called "inspections" is a serious infringement on China's territorial sovereignty.  

The resolution even decides to allocate 1.6 million yen (US$14,800) as costs of ship rent for the "inspections" of the islands.


As is known to all, the Diaoyu and surrounding islands, some 92 sea miles from port city Keelung of Taiwan, have been part of the Chinese territory since ancient times.


Chinese people from Taiwan, Zhejiang and Fujian provinces have carried out fishing and herb-collection at and around the islands since ancient times. The fact that the islands belong to China was recorded in "Tail Wind," a book published during the Yongle reign of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).


Japan's ancient atlas of "Ryukyu Kingdom," published in 1783 and 1785, also show that the islands belong to China. Before the Sino-Japanese War of 1894-1895, launched by Japanese imperialists to annex the Korean Peninsula and invade China, Japan had never had objections to China's territorial sovereignty over the islands.


In view of Japan's disagreement on the issue of the Diaoyu Islands afterwards, the Chinese government has, by proceeding from the overall situation of developing Sino-Japanese friendship and by sticking to its consistent position, reached a consensus with Japanese leaders: shelving the dispute on the sovereignty over the islands, leaving it to be solved by future generations, and refraining from taking unilateral actions on this issue.


But some groups of Japanese right wingers have repeatedly broken the consensus by taking unilateral unlawful actions on many occasions, including going to the islands to repair the beacon and build a Shinto shrine, thus challenging China's territorial sovereignty.


The Japanese government not only connives at the right-wing groups' provocative activities, but also goes back on its promise of not taking unilateral actions and tries in vain to capture the Diaoyu islands as so-called "Japanese territory."


Starting from 2002, the Japanese government has secretly signed "rent contract" with self-claimed Japanese "owners" of the islands, saying it has obtained "administrative right" to the islands.


Both the Japanese government's "rent contract" and Ishigaki parliament's resolution try to show that Japan has "de facto control" and "valid jurisdiction" over the Diaoyu Islands.


However, any unilateral action taken by the Japanese government, local parliament or right wingers concerning the Diaoyu Islands is unlawful and invalid, and can in no way deny the fact that the Diaoyu Islands are part of China's sacred territory.


If Japan continues to take unilateral actions time and again to challenge China's territorial sovereignty, it can only worsen China-Japan relations. It is hoped that the relevant Japanese departments will, proceeding from the overall situation of safeguarding Japan-China relations, refrain from doing things harmful to the bilateral ties.


(Xinhua News Agency June 21, 2005)

Chinese Protest Japan's Move on Islands
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Japan Has No Right to Claim Diaoyu Islands
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