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  • Dec 23, 2014
  • Updated: 10:43am

Diaoyu Islands

The Diaoyu Islands are a group of uninhabited islands located roughly due east of mainland China, northeast of Taiwan, west of Okinawa Island, and north of the southwestern end of the Ryukyu Islands. They are currently controlled by Japan, which calls them Senkaku Islands. Both China and Taiwan claim sovereignty over the islands. 

NewsChina Insider
Defence zone

Chinese in Japan told to register for ‘emergencies’ amid territorial row

PUBLISHED : Monday, 25 November, 2013, 12:20pm
UPDATED : Monday, 25 November, 2013, 6:16pm

The Chinese embassy in Tokyo has called on all Chinese citizens in Japan to voluntarily register with its consular section as tensions between the two countries reach new heights over a territorial dispute in the East China Sea.

The embassy called on all the Chinese living in Japan to register “to facilitate consular assistance” in case of “a major unexpected emergency”, according to a statement on its website. Chinese living in Japan were asked to submit contact details of next of kin in Japan and China.

According to Japanese census data, there are more than 600,000 people of Chinese descent living in Japan. Chinese media have reported the majority of this group are students, business people and employees of Japanese companies, but it is unclear how many of them have retained Chinese citizenship.  

A registration form was uploaded on the diplomatic mission’s homepage in early November, but attracted widespread attention over the weekend after China announced on Saturday it was setting up an “air defence identification zone” in the East China Sea, which covers the disputed Diaoyu Islands.

The zone, which overlaps roughly in half of Japanese airspace claims, requires all airplanes crossing it to report to the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the civil aviation administration. China launched an aerial patrol to enforce the claims on Saturday, while Japan deployed two fighter jets to intercept the patrols.

China's leaders are determined to pursue their interests with little heed to their neighbours
Dr Sheila A. Smith

The US and South Korea has expressed concern over the move. Japan’s Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida warned of the “danger of unpredictable events on the spot” in a reaction on Sunday.

The call for registration with the embassy comes amid record resentment amongst the Japanese public towards China. According to a Japanese cabinet poll released on Saturday, 80.7 per cent of Japanese “do not feel friendly” towards China, the worst percentage since the annual poll was launched in 1978, according to the Kyodo News Agency. 91 per cent of those polled said bilateral ties were currently “not good” or “not particularly good”.

Dr Stephen Nagy, assistant professor at the Department of Japanese Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said the growing resentment towards China reflects a shift in perceptions towards the country’s largest partner.

“Many Japanese used to look at the government being the problem in China, but [we’re] seeing widespread hostility towards Japanese residents and businesses in China […] resentment has moved from the state to the grassroots level,” he said.

Nagy, who teaches contemporary Japan-China relations, said the call for registration was not a genuine effort to account for the country’s Chinese population, but a covert show of force. “700,000 Chinese live, study and work in Japan,” he said. “This is more of a tactical gesture by the Chinese government to put pressure on Japan.”

Dr Sheila A. Smith, a senior fellow for Japan Studies at the Council of Foreign Relations in Washington, said the Chinese announcement during the weekend "stepped up the possibility of an incident between the two militaries."

"It confirms what many around the region have feared - China's leaders are determined to pursue their interests with little heed to their neighbours," she said.


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This article is now closed to comments

Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands clearly belong to China and it only natural for China to define and enforce the air defense zone, and so, the protests by Japan and US are obviously abnormal. In the first place, China does not recognize the San Francisco Treaty signed between the US and Japan. Secondly, China does not recognize Japan's sovereignty over the disputed islands. Instead, Japan has now tacitly acknowledged that the islands are in dispute with China. And so, it is proven, beyond any reasonable doubt that the islands belong to China and both the US and Japan had acted like gangsters in trying to control the disputed islands.
china never thought of this and the sad part, they're being clowned around the world lately from Jimmy Kimmel show to Holland Got talent to the aid of Philippine typhoon.
the yanks are behaving like a 'wiseguy'.. Mr. Abe is a 'made' guy.. the Chinese cant touch him :)
OldPeak Toad
Well come on China and Japan
It’s time to have a war again
Been so long since we have seen
Napalm bombs and submarines
So switch off your brains and pick up a gun
You’re gonna have a whole lot of fun
And it’s one-two-three what are you fighting for
Don’t ask us we don’t give a damn
Next stop ‘s some darn Island
And its five-six-seven open up the pearly gates
Well don't take your time and wonder why
Whoopee you’re all gonna die!
Thanx to Country Joe McDonald and the Fish, Woodstock 1968


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