Diaoyu Islands

How they see it

China and Japan's dispute over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 23 September, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 23 September, 2012, 12:31am

1. China Daily

The Diaoyu Islands have been China's inherent territory since ancient times, and their surrounding waters are traditional fishing grounds for Chinese fishermen. Each year more than 1,000 Chinese fishing boats enter that area. When China and Japan signed the Treaty of Peace and Friendship in 1978, they resolved to settle all their disputes by peaceful means. Yet, with its continual provocations, Japan seems intent on initiating a clash between the two countries. Since the Japanese government started implementing its "nationalisation" plan for the Diaoyu Islands, it has closed the door on a diplomatic resolution to the dispute … It should have the wisdom and guts to negotiate. (Beijing)


2. Global Times

In other disputes China has with its neighbours, the US directly or indirectly sides with China's opponents. The question is how much weight the US will put behind Japan. Until now, Washington has been reluctant in openly supporting Japan's claim, since Tokyo's demand isn't legitimate. Also, Japan hasn't been in a disadvantageous position that requires Washington to step in. Moreover, the US has to take into consideration the Sino-US relationship. It doesn't want to face a strategic dilemma whether to intervene if a war breaks out between China and Japan. China can urge the US to move towards a neutral position through concrete actions that show doing so is more in line with US interests. (Beijing)


3. Financial Times

As anti-Japanese protests continue to spread, hopes that the dispute can be contained by diplomatic means look dangerously uncertain. The protests have been sparked by Japan's decision to buy the islands from their private owner. This may have seemed like provocation. But the real provocateur is Shintaro Ishihara, mayor of Tokyo, a well-known China baiter, who decided to buy them through public subscription. In pre-empting his purchase, Tokyo has kept the issue of sovereignty in the government's, not populists' hands. Yet China appears to have done little to rein in popular anger. Japan has long been a tool in the party's political armoury. But the scale of protests shows such jingoism can rapidly spiral out of control. (London)