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2008年6月18日 (水)


(Jun. 18, 2008) The Yomiuri Shimbun

Taiwan should step back from collision row

尖閣諸島 台湾は冷静に問題処理を(6月18日付・読売社説)

Taiwan's reaction to last week's collision between a Taiwanese fishing boat and a Japan Coast Guard vessel has left a nasty taste in the mouth. We wonder if Taipei's warming ties with Beijing have extended to shared anti-Japanese feelings.


The Taiwanese fishing boat intruded into Japanese territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. The fishing boat sank after colliding with the Japan Coast Guard patrol boat Koshiki.


The Taiwan authorities have been quick to trumpet their territorial claims to the Senkaku Islands. They have been much less forthcoming in trying to levelheadedly handle this unfortunate incident, which has stirred up anti-Japanese feeling in Taiwan.



(levelheadedly=落ち着いて、沈着に、冷静に) (levelheaded=落ち着いている、沈着な、冷静な)

The Senkaku Islands are Japanese territory. Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura spelled out in black and white the government's position on the issue when he said, "There's no question they are Japan's own territory, it's plainly self-evident from the viewpoints of history and international law."


(black and white=白黒はっきりとした、明白な、明瞭な) (plainly=明白に、はっきりと、素直に)(self-evident=自明の、わかりきった、明白な、あきらかな)

On Tuesday, Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou again said Taiwan claimed the islands. However, he also indicated that he wishes to resolve the incident peacefully.


Taiwan should calmly deal with this issue without unnecessarily arousing anti-Japanese feelings.


(arousing=誘発、喚起、引き起こし) (arouse=誘発する、喚起する、引き起こす)


Tokyo keeps its head


The 11th Regional Maritime Safety Headquarters judged that both sides were at fault for the collision, and sent to prosecutors papers on the fishing boat captain and the coast guard vessel captain on suspicion of professional negligence resulting in endangering traffic.


(professional negligence=業務上過失)

An executive of the Taipei office of the Interchange Association, Japan, which serves as Tokyo's channel for contact with Taiwan, visited the fishing boat captain's home in Taipei County and expressed his regret over the incident. The official said compensation would be offered in accordance with the law. We think the measures taken by the Japanese government are cool-headed and appropriate.


Nevertheless, the Taiwan authorities dispatched nine patrol boats and intruded into Japanese territorial waters for 2-1/2 hours Monday under the pretext of protecting a private ship headed for the Senkaku Islands to protest against the incident.



China, which has been keen to improve relations with Japan, has refrained from supporting Taiwan's actions so far. Ordinary Taiwan citizens also seem to be indifferent to the authorities' stance.




Getting tough with intruders


Taiwan's inordinate reaction to the latest incident has its roots in Taiwan's ruling Nationalist Party (Kuomintang, or KMT). Many KMT members are from mainland China. The party is relishing being back in power after an interval of eight years, and these members are amplifying the party's original anti-Japanese position.


(inordinate=過度の、法外な、極端な) (relishing=味わっている、楽しんでいる) (relish=味わう、楽しむ)

Japan-Taiwan ties are said to be at their best since diplomatic relations were severed in 1972. Extreme care must be taken to ensure these ties are not jeopardized.


(sever=切断する、切り取る、国交を断絶する) (jeopardize=危うくする、危険に陥れる)

In Japan, a law on foreign vessels that enter Japan's territorial waters will be enacted on July 1.


Until now, there had been no clear legislation that could be applied to foreign vessels that brazenly entered territorial waters without good cause, such as for rescue operations.



The law's enactment will enable authorities in this country to board such ships for inspection and issue deportation orders when needed. Violators will be subject to criminal punishment.


Foreign vessels that dare to enter Japanese territorial waters should be aware that the government's response will not be as weak-kneed as it once was.


(dare=あえて~する、思い切って~する) (weak-kneed=弱腰の、優柔不断の)

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 18, 2008)

20086180150  読売新聞)


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