230 Chi­nese fish­ing boats near dis­puted islets

The Myanmar Times - - World -

SOME 230 Chi­nese fish­ing ves­sels and seven coast guard ships, in­clud­ing four ap­par­ently car­ry­ing weapons, sailed into wa­ters close to dis­puted East China Sea is­lands, Ja­pan’s foreign min­istry and coast­guard said.

Six Chi­nese coast guard ships were spot­ted on Au­gust 6, Ja­panese of­fi­cials said, while an­other, which seemed to be car­ry­ing arms, was spot­ted later in the con­tigu­ous wa­ters of the un­in­hab­ited is­lands.

The two coun­tries are locked in a long-run­ning dis­pute over the rocky islets – known as Senkaku in Ja­pan and Diaoyu in China – but it is rare for so many Chi­nese fish­ing ves­sels to be spot­ted in the dis­puted wa­ters.

“We can­not be sure about what the Chi­nese coast guards are do­ing for what pur­poses in the wa­ters,” a Ja­panese coast guard of­fi­cial said.

The 230 fish­ing ves­sels and seven coast guard boats re­mained in the area for nine hours.

Af­ter catch­ing sight of the coast guard ships in the con­tigu­ous wa­ters at 8:05am, the Ja­panese foreign min­istry lodged a protest with the Chi­nese em­bassy in Tokyo. –

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