China Rejects Japan’s Protest over Disputed Islands

China Rejects Japan’s Protest over Disputed Islands
# 09 January 2013 03:59 (UTC +04:00)

Baku–APA. China’s Foreign Ministry rejected Japan’s protest over Chinese maritime surveillance ships’ patrol near a chain of islands claimed by both Tokyo and Beijing, APA reports quoting RIA Novosti.

Japan summoned on Tuesday Chinese Ambassador to Tokyo Cheng Yonghua expressing its protest over China’s maritime patrols in the waters of the Senkaku islands, which China calls the Diaoyus.

“The Diaoyu Islands and their affiliated islets have always been China's inherent territory. The patrol conducted by China's maritime surveillance ships in waters off the islands is a normal performance of duty to exercise jurisdiction,” Xinhua quoted Hong Lei, a spokesman for the Foreign Ministry, as saying.

Last year the islands became the center of a dispute that has triggered violent anti-Japanese protests across China and caused Japanese companies to suspend operations in China.

The islands, which are also claimed by Taiwan, lie on a vital shipping route and are situated above large hydrocarbon deposits.

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