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S. Korea, Japan renew territorial dispute
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South Korea on Monday strongly denounced Japan's territorial claim over the disputed islets of Dokdo, which Japan calls Takeshima, in the Sea of Japan, vowing to take series of countermeasures against Japan's move.

An aerial view shows Dokdo islets, known as 'Takeshima' in Japan, in South Korea Monday, July 14, 2008. (Xinhua/AFP Photo)

Japan's Education Ministry announced earlier on Monday its plan to define Dokdo as part of Japanese territory in a teacher's guidebook, which is expected to influence upcoming middle school textbooks to be published by Japan's civilian publishers and also serve as a guideline for teachers, to be used from 2012 despite Seoul's repeated opposition.


In response to the decision, the South Korean Foreign Ministry released a statement at a nationwide televised news conference, describing Japan's claim over the sovereignty to the disputed islets of Dokdo in its educational guidelines as "unacceptable and intolerable."

South Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman Moon Tae-young said at the conference that South Korean Ambassador to Japan Kwon Chul- hyun will return to Seoul soon on a temporary basis.

"The South Korean government can never tolerate this and strongly urges the Japanese government to immediately stop the attempt," Moon said in the statement.

The spokesman said that Dokdo clearly belongs to South Korea " historically, geographically, and by international law."

"The government makes it clear again that it will deal sternly with any attempt to undermine its sovereignty over Dokdo," he said.

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