« Letter from OFA U.S.A | トップページ | Olympics: Uchimura defends gold in men's all-around gymnastics at Rio »

2016年8月10日 (水)

尖閣領海侵入 中国は示威活動を自制せよ

The Yomiuri Shimbun
China must restrain its activities in waters around the Senkakus
尖閣領海侵入 中国は示威活動を自制せよ

We cannot overlook China’s obvious attempt to change the status quo by force. We strongly demand that China restrain itself.

Around the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, Beijing has made demonstrative activities by using a number of government vessels belonging to the China Coast Guard, unilaterally escalating the situation.

Since Friday, Chinese vessels have intruded into Japan’s territorial waters on more than 10 occasions. The number of Chinese government vessels entering Japan’s territorial waters has gradually increased, and on Monday morning, a record 14 vessels simultaneously sailed in the contiguous zone around the Senkakus.

The Senkaku Islands are an inherent territory of Japan both historically and under international law and have consistently been under the effective control of Japan. The intrusion of Chinese vessels into Japan’s territorial waters is obviously an infringement of Japan’s sovereignty.

It is only natural that Shinsuke Sugiyama, vice minister for foreign affairs, has strongly and repeatedly protested to Chinese Ambassador to Japan Cheng Yonghua, saying such actions “significantly raises tensions in the area.”

China may have been repulsed by Japan’s call on China to accept the ruling made by the court of arbitration, which dismissed Beijing’s claims that its sovereignty covers almost all of the South China Sea. However, there is no legitimacy to China’s logic, words and deeds.

The Japanese government must respond in a level-headed and resolute manner.

A major problem is that these government vessels seemingly have been cooperating in their intrusive activities with hundreds of Chinese fishing boats. It is a common practice for China to dispatch government vessels to the area under the pretext of “guarding” or “supervising and guiding” fishing boats and intrude into the territorial waters of other countries and expand its control over areas by force, thereby rendering the situation a fait accompli.

Japan must heighten guard

China has “maritime militia,” fishermen who are trained and organized. They sometimes serve as vanguards in disputed waters, under the instructions of the Chinese military. Japan should keep its guard up against them.

By spring, the Japan Coast Guard organized a system in which 12 patrol vessels would constantly keep watch over waters around the Senkakus. It is important to build new patrol vessels and further increase and reinforce personnel future.

We also must not overlook the fact that China has installed radar and surveillance camera equipment on a sea-based facility where China is developing a gas field near the Japan-China intermediary line in the East China Sea.

The radar is believed to be used to scan a small area of the sea and does not have the capability of keeping track of aircraft. But there is a possibility the device will become the first step in building a military site. Should the radar’s capabilities be upgraded later on, the activities of the Self-Defense Forces could be monitored, possibly affecting Japan’s security. We should pay close attention to China’s actions down the road.

In order to avoid any untoward incident, it is important for the Japanese and Chinese governments to continue dialogues on various levels. It is also essential for the SDF and China’s military to take confidence-building measures.

China has refused to negotiate with Japan over the joint development of natural gas fields, and there has been no progress in bilateral talks on a “maritime liaison mechanism” aimed at preventing accidental clashes between the aircrafts and ships of the SDF and China.

During a foreign ministerial meeting between Japan and China held in Laos in late July, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi is said to have acknowledged the need for talks between the two countries. Easing tensions with its neighboring countries will also benefit China itself. We hope China will agree to hold bilateral talks.

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Aug. 9, 2016)


« Letter from OFA U.S.A | トップページ | Olympics: Uchimura defends gold in men's all-around gymnastics at Rio »





« Letter from OFA U.S.A | トップページ | Olympics: Uchimura defends gold in men's all-around gymnastics at Rio »