尖閣沖衝突事件 中国人船長の逮捕は当然だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Sep. 10, 2010)
Chinese fishing boat captain's arrest reasonable
尖閣沖衝突事件 中国人船長の逮捕は当然だ(9月9日付・読売社説)

There is no question that the Senkaku Islands belong to Japan both historically and under international law.

On Wednesday, the Japan Coast Guard arrested the captain of a Chinese trawler allegedly fishing illegally in Japanese waters off the islands for trying to prevent JCG officers from conducting an inspection.

The arrest is reasonable. The government should take criminal procedures strictly in accordance with domestic laws.

The Chinese boat on Tuesday allegedly ignored orders by JCG patrol vessels to halt and in an attempt to flee collided with two of the JCG vessels. Believing that the fishing boat's actions were deliberate, the JCG took the captain into custody on suspicion of obstructing official duties of marine safety officers.

We hope the JCG will clarify the circumstances surrounding the trawler's collision with the two patrol vessels as well as illegal fishing by Chinese vessels.

Senkaku claims made in '70s

The Chinese government asserts that the Senkakus belong to China and that, therefore, the trawler was not fishing illegally in Japanese waters. It also protested the captain's arrest through diplomatic channels.

However, no country protested when the Meiji government incorporated the islands into Japanese territory in 1895. Under the San Francisco Peace Treaty signed in 1951, the islands were not included among those territories abandoned by Japan.

China and Taiwan did not claim the islands until the early 1970s, when petroleum and natural gas reserves were found under the ocean floor around the islands in the East China Sea. It is obvious that China's claim is unreasonable.

On the Internet in China, anti-Japan sentiment and patriotism are growing, with Japan being denounced and the trawler's captain held up as a hero.

Calm approach needed

We should avoid a recurrence of the massive anti-Japan protests that took place five years ago in China, with public opinion on the Internet keeping the pot boiling. We hope China will take a level-headed approach on the latest development.

Japan-China negotiations on an agreement to jointly develop gas fields in the East China Sea began at the end of July. It is important not to upset bilateral relations, and that negotiations proceed calmly.

At the time of the collisions, about 160 Chinese vessels were illegally operating off the Senkaku Islands.

The Chinese Navy is dispatching warships on the pretext of protecting Chinese fishing vessels in the South China Sea, increasing tensions with Southeast Asian nations.

If China is trying to increase its influence in the East China Sea by sending fishing vessels as an "advance guard," it will affect the national security of Japan.

While the JCG will continue to monitor the illegal operations of Chinese fishing boats in the area, the Maritime Self-Defense Force should cooperate closely with the JCG by collecting and sharing relevant information.

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Sept. 9, 2010)
(2010年9月9日01時22分 読売新聞)

by kiyoshimat | 2010-09-10 04:18 | 英字新聞

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