Japan lodges protest against intrusion by Chinese ships in waters near Senkaku Islands
After two Chinese coast guard vessels entered Japanese territorial waters, Japan swiftly moved to action and lodged a protest on Monday against Chinese vessels urging them to promptly leave the area.
Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told a press conference that two Chinese coast guard vessels entered Japanese territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea around 1:30 p.m.
The Japan-administered islands are claimed by China, which calls them Diaoyu.
“Such activities by Chinese coast guard ships violate international law,” Kato said, describing them as “extremely regrettable and utterly intolerable.”
The Japan Coast Guard said one of the Chinese vessels that intruded in the country’s waters appeared to move nearer to a Japanese fishing boat in the area.
Following the incident, the government set up a special team at the prime minister’s office to analyze the situation.
The latest incursion came after Chinese ships entered Japanese waters for two days in a row from February 6 following the implementation of a new Chinese coast guard law on February 1.
The law allows the China Coast Guard to use weapons against foreign ships that Beijing views as illegally entering its waters, sparking concern it could target Japanese vessels off the Senkaku Islands.