(IntegrityPress.org) – China intends to maintain a daily presence at a group of uninhabited Japanese islets they claim as their sovereign territory in the new year according to a report by Kyodo News.
Chinese Communist Leader Xi Jinping made the announcement during a visit to the Chinese coast guard’s East China Sea command center. Xi emphasized his desire to “constantly strengthen” their presence around the Senkaku Islands.
The Chinese refer to them as the Diaoyu Islands, and they are uninhabited islets or very small islands. They’re approximately 200 miles southwest from Okinawa prefecture in Japan. The Japanese declared them their territory in 2012 and tensions have been mounting ever since.
China regularly sends large vessels, occasionally armed, to stalk and intimidate smaller commercial fishing vessels in the area. The new announcement suggests they’ll be doing so more frequently.
Xi told the coast guard members that he wouldn’t relinquish one millimeter of their territory while seemingly ignoring that his country has been attempting to conquer new territories. Not only is China contesting this group of islets south of Japan, it’s also been jousting with the Philippines over the Scarborough Shoal and other small areas near the tiny island nation.
China also plans to inspect fishing vessels that come into the area as part of their new territorial ‘defense’ plan. They previously threatened Taiwanese merchant ships with inspections.
U.S. authorities haven’t weighed in on the Senkaku islets recently, but recognizes Japan’s proximity and current authority. President Joe Biden reiterated the U.S.’s commitment to defend Japan under security treaties going back to the end of World War 2. Should China attack Japanese vessels in the area, it would trigger a U.S. response.
U.S. Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel took shots at China’s current economic downturn, suggesting that it was wasting energy and efforts better spent on improving unemployment for young Chinese in a scathing rebuke on X (Twitter).
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