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Taiwan confirms sovereignty over Diaoyutai Islands

No plans to issue names for islands: Taiwan Interior Ministry

Taiwan confirms sovereignty over Diaoyutai Islands

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The government on Saturday confirmed Taiwan’s sovereignty over the Diaoyutai Islands after both Japan and China announced new names for some of the uninhabited islands.
The three countries have disputed sovereignty over the islands for decades, though Japan effectively controls them. They are surrounded by rich fishing waters and are believed to be sitting on top of oil and gas reserves.
Japan recently announced four names for uninhabited rocks, provoking official protests and calls for restraint in Taipei and Beijing. On Saturday, China published a list of 70 island names on a web site. The move was seen as retaliation for Japan’s action.
A Foreign Ministry spokesman in Beijing said that no matter whether Japan named any islands or not, they still belonged to China.
The Interior Ministry in Taipei said Taiwan did not have any plans to come up with a list of names.
Cabinet spokesman Philip Yang said Saturday the government would never recognize Japan’s right to name the islands. No matter whether one looked at the islands from the point of view of history or of international law, the islands belonged to the Republic of China, he said.
Yang called on all sides to use peaceful and rational methods to solve the dispute. The relevant departments would express their concern or lodge official protests in order to safeguard the country’s rights, he said.
Yang said the government’s present priority was to protect the rights of Taiwanese fishermen working in the area. Taiwan would not cooperate with China on the issue, he emphasized.
Taiwan maintains the islands resort under the town of Toucheng in Ilan County.
Activists from Taiwan and Hong Kong have tried several times to plant flags on the islands, but Japan’s coast guard has been quick in repelling them, sometimes leading to collisions.


Updated : 2021-06-20 22:12 GMT+08:00