Chinese ships enter disputed waters off Senkaku islands

Chinese ships have once again entered into the waters of disputed Tokyo-controlled Senkaku islands.

The maritime surveillance ships entered the 12-nautical-mile zone (territorial zone) off the Senkaku islands, which China calls the Diaoyu. The move invited angry reactions from Japan with Japanese PM Shinzo Abe vowing to “expel by force” any Chinese landing on the archipelago. Tokyo had nationalized part of the island chain in September 2012.

What is the dispute over this archipelago?

The Senkaku Islands (also known as the Diaoyu Islands  in Mainland China or Tiaoyutai Islands in Taiwan, or the Pinnacle Islands) are a group of uninhabited islands controlled by Japan in the East China Sea. The dispute is over the claim of Senkaku islands which are located in the East China Sea. The main parts of the islands which are currently controlled by Japan are also being claimed by the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan (Republic of China). These islands are called Diaoyu in China, and Tiaoyutai Islands in Taiwan.

Background:

  • Senkaku Islands were controlled by Japan since 1895.
  • From a 1945 to 1972 administered by the United Stateses.
  • US handover of authority to Japan in 1971, disputed by China
  • China and Taiwan claim the islands as their possession and a seizure by Japan and want Japan to return as the rest of Imperial Japan’s conquests were returned in 1945.

Importance:

  • Senkaku Islands are believed to have abundance of natural resources and is also strategically important as it is close to international trade rout

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Categories: India Current Affairs 2017

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