Two Chinese ships enter Japan's territorial waters off Senkaku Islands 

WION Web Team
Tokyo   Published: Mar 29, 2021, 08:49 PM(IST)

A file photo of China and Japan flags Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Japan Coast Guard officials said that the vessels intruded into Japan's waters off Minamikojima Island around 4 am on Monday, NHK World reported, adding that Japanese officials are warning the ships to leave the waters

In yet another case of illegal intrusion by Beijing, two Chinese government vessels entered Japan's territorial waters off the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea on Monday morning. 

Japan Coast Guard officials said that the vessels intruded into Japan's waters off Minamikojima Island around 4 am on Monday, NHK World reported, adding that Japanese officials are warning the ships to leave the waters. 

As many as three Chinese government vessels were earlier seen navigating in the contiguous zone, just outside Japan's territorial waters, officials said. 

The Japanese broadcaster reported that this is the 11th time this year that official Chinese vessels have entered Japan's territorial waters off the Senkaku Islands. 

Japan controls the Senkaku Islands, however, China and Taiwan continue to claim them. Tokyo maintains the islands are an inherent part of its territory as per history and international law.  

Earlier, USA's Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, during his first conversation with Japanese counterpart, had renewed USA's commitment to defend Senkaku Islands against Chinese expansionism. Japan and China have a dispute over islands in East China Sea that are called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China. 

Austin and Japanese Defence Minister Nobuo Kishi confirmed that Article 5 of the US-Japan security treaty, which stipulates US defence obligations to Japan, covers the Senkaku Islands, said Jiji news agency. 

The defence ministers also reaffirmed their opposition to any unilateral act that would undermine Japan's right to administer the islands. 

Japan has become increasingly concerned about Chinese expansionist manoeuvres in East China Sea including incursions in waters around disputed islands. 

(With inputs from agencies) 

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