China says coast guard confronts Japanese vessels

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A China Coast Guard vessel sails in waters 66 kilometers from the East China Sea islands called Senkaku by Japan and Diaoyu by China Wednesday. AP/Japan’s 11th Regional Coast Guard

BEIJING—China says ships from its newly formed coast guard confronted Japanese patrol vessels Friday in waters surrounding East China Sea islands claimed by both sides.

The State Oceanic Administration that oversees the service says four of its ships “sternly declared” China’s sovereignty over the islands called Senkaku by Japan and Diaoyu by China, and demanded they leave the area. The uninhabited archipelago is controlled by Tokyo but also claimed by Beijing.

It was not clear if any action resulted from the Chinese declaration. Such sovereignty declarations are usually made by hailing Japanese boats by radio and loudspeaker, as well as flashing shipboard signs.

Ships from Chinese civilian agencies have maintained a steady presence in the area since tensions spiked in September following Japan’s purchase of some of the islands from their private owners.

Those vessels are being replaced by ships from the coast guard, which was formally inaugurated on Monday and merges the resources of four former agencies. China says the move was intended to boost its ability to enforce its maritime claims, upping the stakes in an increasingly tense competition for marine territory and resources in waters off its eastern and southeastern coasts.

Chinese coast guard ships have also been spotted this week at Mischief Reef off the western Philippine coast, according to a confidential Philippine government report obtained by The Associated Press. China occupied the vast reef in 1995, sparking protests from rival claimant Manila.

China says virtually the entire South China Sea and its islands belong to it, a claim based on alleged historical precedents that are strongly contested by the Philippines, Vietnam and others.

While Beijing has mainly used civilian agencies to patrol its claims, the new coast guard gives it greater latitude to do so by centralizing operations in a single body. The body is nominally under civilian control, but closely coordinates with the increasingly formidable Chinese navy that recently added an aircraft carrier to its fleet.

Coast guard ships are mainly repurposed naval or commercial vessels and are equipped with light armaments such as machine guns and deck cannons, unlike in the past when most of China’s patrol craft had no weaponry.

Japan has already expressed renewed unease about China’s military and maritime activity near the disputed islands, and on Friday released a defense paper calling for an increase in its surveillance capability, possibly including the use of drones capable of wide-range, high-altitude monitoring around the clock.

The paper also proposed creating a marine force to defend the disputed East China Sea islands.

Japan scrambled jets on Wednesday to keep watch on a Chinese Y-8 early warning plane flying over international waters between Japan’s southern Okinawa island and an outer island relatively close to the disputed area in the East China Sea.

The Chinese Defense Ministry issued a statement defending the right of its aircraft to operate in the area.

Around the same time the Chinese fighter jet was sighted, Japan’s coast guard reported the appearance of the four coast guard vessels near the disputed islands.

Japan’s coast guard said the four Chinese craft were seen early Wednesday just outside Japanese territorial waters.

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  • levis2012

    The Philippines must build its Defense now. Diplomacy and talks are useless. The country must prepare for war, and it must allot resources to purchase military hardware (air force and naval), to prepare for war. China will eventually impose their interests by force. War is inevitable. The Philippines must build up now before it is too late. If China can confront and intimidate Japan, how much more can it do with a weaker nation like Philippines? At least build a minimum defense, enough to at least fight the invading naval forces of China. At least we can fight, and not being raped and kidnapped by China without any resistance at all.

  • dragonian

    japs govt———fire the first shot………let the game begins…….

    remember…..it’s a whole new Chinese army these days….unlike 70 years ago..!

    and oh….flippines’ comfort girls is still as sweet and hornyy as before………………

    • boy_kurimaw

      yah nobody like chinese women because they are stinky, only fellow chinese like their smell hohoho

      • Hugo.

        agree, that’s why there are more filipino whores around and spread aids like hell.

      • boy_kurimaw

        yah filipino women are irresistible, chinese women are yucky because they have unpleasant odor and they carry viruses made from china LOL.

      • Hugo.

        another news flash too:

        While the prevalence of HIV and AIDS is still low in the Philippines, the country’s HIV & AIDS registry for 2013 reveals a 79% increase in newly reported HIV cases, compared to the same period in 2012. Filipinos who engage in risky behaviour, such as intravenous drug users and those who perform unprotected sex with multiple partners are most at-risk. And they are mostly adolescents and young adults.

        The Philippines now is one of only two countries in Asia, and one of seven globally, where the number of new HIV cases has increased by over 25 per cent from 2001 to 2009.

      • Saigon Kick

        News Flash….”There are 10,000 HIV positive cases in Philippines and 1,500,000 cases in China”

  • jun2012

    China wake up, what is not yours is not yours, don’t force the issue, make friends among your Asian neighbors like the Philippines, Vietnam and Japan. The more you
    force the issue that those islands are yours, which in the eyes of the world is not yours then you end up without friends. Come to think of it, people in this countries might start boycotting your products because you are antagonizing them and much more you are perceived to be intimidating them. Think about it China.

    • Hugo.

      and what is china’s is china’s.

      the philippines should stop stirring up more problems by grabbing chinese land.

      check your trade figures, a philippine boycott to china is so insignificant, while the otherwise can damage your economy very much. china is the philippines 3rd largest buyer, and the philippines is just the 6th within asean, and asean itself is just the 4th of china export destination.

  • Guest

    China says coast guard confronts Japanese vessels, and the retarded chinese goes back to their home port jumping like monkeys. And when their superior smiling ask them did you take back Diaoyu. The retarded chinese scratch their stupid head and said, I taught we just going to scold them and hurried back home.

    • Hugo.

      don’t think you are logical in saying that.

      the diaoyu islands are patrolled by the china marine surveillance and now the china coast guard. since sept 2012 it has been a continuous and uninterrupted exercise and conducted within 12 nautical miles of the diaoyu islands.

      china is chasing away japanese intruders from diaoyu islands, there is no such agenda as “taking back” the diaoyu islands as it has been a chinese territory.

  • Guest

    Ah, yun pala ang confront papaalam lang sa japanese para kung pwede balik ulit.

  • ozkid

    Is that a coast guard? It looks like a noodle factory ship.

  • bright

    right now, CHN harassment against JPN should be used as the benchmark..

    yet it appears, the Samurai cannot be broken..

    • Hugo.

      samurai/bushido has been broken with modern weaponry plus two atomic bombs.

  • angtanga

    China’s logic in claiming all this disputed territories will not be a good precedent – then the US can lay claim to the entire Pacific as well. China is a rotten and irresponsible neighbor.

    • Hugo.

      no the u.s. cannot lay claim, as it was not a nation to support its claim like england in the past.

      but china can in the south china sea.

  • KarlosRegaza

    China “invented” the eastern civilization. They also invented maps owning countries in the eastern hemisphere.

    What they think of UN in the first place?

    • Hugo.

      china is one of the founding states of the un and one of the only five permanent member of the un security council.

      china is also a major contributor to un efforts both financially and in material.

      meanwhile the philippines think of un as a tool they can use to steal chinese land.

  • wvillaro822

    I don’t believe the Chinese can intimidate to Jap. My friend in Japan said, let china start it and say sorry later.

    • Hugo.

      and we say let japan starts it (again) and say sorry much quicker.

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