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China summons Japanese ambassador again over boat

 Japan Coast Guard personnel disembark Zhan Qixiong, the 41-year-old Chinese captain of a Chinese fishing boat, center, on Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2010 at...
 A Chinese fishing boat, left, accompanied by a Japan Coast Guard boat, right, is led into a port on Ishigaki island, southwestern Japan, on Wednesday...

Japan China Ships Collide

Japan Coast Guard personnel disembark Zhan Qixiong, the 41-year-old Chinese captain of a Chinese fishing boat, center, on Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2010 at...

Japan China Ships Collide

A Chinese fishing boat, left, accompanied by a Japan Coast Guard boat, right, is led into a port on Ishigaki island, southwestern Japan, on Wednesday...

China increased pressure on Tokyo on Sunday by warning it to make a "wise" resolution and immediately release the Chinese fishermen and their boat detained after it collided with two Japanese patrol vessels near disputed islands east of Taiwan.
China's Foreign Ministry said in a statement that State Councilor Dai Bingguo, Beijing's senior foreign policy adviser, made this clear when he summoned Japanese Ambassador Uichiro Niwa in the early hours of Sunday _ the fourth time the ambassador has been summoned over the crash.
Dai warned Japan not to wrongly judge the situation, and urged it to make a "wise political resolution" and release the crew and boat immediately, the statement said. Niwa said he would report the Chinese government's position to Tokyo, the Chinese ministry said.
China has said the confrontation could damage its relations with Japan, underlining the sensitivity of the territorial dispute over the East China Sea, one of several that trouble China's ties with its Asian neighbors.
As the robust Chinese economy's demand for resources grows, Beijing's commercial ships are venturing farther from shore and its more powerful navy is enforcing claims in disputed waters.
The spat has stirred nationalistic passions in China, with newspapers and activists calling for a tough stand against any threats to China's territorial claims.
Sunday's move follows China's announcement Friday that it was postponing talks scheduled earlier with Japan on the East China Sea issue in a sign of its anger. The talks, scheduled for mid-September, would have been the second governmental meeting over the territorial disputes in that area.
The collisions occurred Tuesday after the Chinese fishing boat ignored warnings from the patrol vessels to leave the area and then refused to stop for an inspection, Japan's coast guard said.
The incident happened off Japan's Kuba island, just north of disputed islands known as Senkaku in Japanese and Diaoyu in Chinese. The islands, about 120 miles (190 kilometers) east of Taiwan, are controlled by Japan but are also claimed by China and Taiwan.
A Japanese court has allowed prosecutors to keep the boat captain in custody until Sept. 19 before deciding whether to press charges against him. Japan's coast guard has said the boat captain could be released in a few days if he accepts the allegation that he obstructed public duties, resulting in the collision, and pays a fine. If not, he would likely have to stand trial.
The other 14 crew members have remained on the fishing boat, the coast guard said. They cannot land in Japan because they do not have passports but are free to return home if China sends a vessel to pick them up, Japan said.
Last month, a Chinese survey ship allegedly entered Japan's disputed exclusive economic zone without prior notification, breaking a previous agreement between the countries. In April, a Chinese helicopter came within 300 feet (90 meters) of a Japanese military monitoring vessel in the vicinity of a Chinese naval exercise.


Updated : 2021-05-14 21:11 GMT+08:00