Official Statements

Full Text: China's Comments on Senkaku Incident

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Jiang Yu

The following are the full text of remarks by Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Jiang Yu on the recent incident involving a Chinese fishing boat and the Japan Coast Guard in waters near the Senkaku / Diaoyutai Islands.

Reporter: On the collision near the Diaoyu Island, after the detaining of the Chinese captain, China has explicitly demanded that Japan release the crew. However, Japan seems to take a hard-line position. What further specific steps will the Chinese Government take?

Jiang Yu: The Diaoyu Island and its affiliated islands are inherent territories of China. It is absurd, illegal, and invalid that Japan applies its domestic law to Chinese fishing boats working in those waters, and absolutely unacceptable to China. It is imperative that Japan release the crew and the boat immediately so as to avoid further escalation.

Reporter: Will the collision near the Diaoyu Island affect future China-Japan relations and the dialogue on the joint development of the East China Sea?

Jiang Yu: Disputes over territory and sovereignty are highly sensitive, improper handling of which will have a serious impact on the overall interest of China-Japan relations. Japan should have a clear understanding of that.

Reporter: After the collision near the Diaoyu Island, some Chinese activists expressed the wish to go to the Island and assert sovereignty. What measures will the Chinese Government take to ensure their safety?

Jiang Yu: Japan's illegal detaining of the Chinese fishing boat and its crew in the Diaoyu Island waters has met strong reaction from the Chinese public. Japan should face up to the seriousness of the issue and release the crew and the boat immediately and unconditionally so as to avoid further deterioration and escalation. Our position is consistent and clear-cut on the Diaoyu Island issue. Diaoyu Island and its affiliated islands have been China's inherent territory since ancient times, and China owns undisputable sovereignty over them. The Chinese Government is unswerving in its determination and resolve to maintain sovereignty and territorial integrity. It is an objective fact that China and Japan have disputes over the sovereignty issue of the Diaoyu Island. We uphold a proper settlement of the issue through negotiations on the basis of respecting the facts.

Reporter: It's been three days since the collision happened. Under what conditions will China take "further response"?

Jiang Yu: Over the past few days, the Chinese Foreign Ministry and Chinese Embassy in Japan have made solemn representations with the Japanese side on several occasions, expressing strong protest against its illegal detention of the Chinese boat and fishermen in the Diaoyu Island waters. We urge the Japanese side to release the crew and the boat immediately and guarantee the safety of the Chinese fishermen. The Chinese Embassy has already sent a working group to visit them. At present, they are safe and in good condition and also have contacted with their families.

Reporter: It is reported that China has sent a fishery law-enforcement ship to the Diaoyu Island waters. Please confirm. Is this relevant to the collision?

Jiang Yu: China has sent fishery law-enforcement ship to relevant waters to conduct fishery administration activities according to Chinese laws, with an aim to safeguard fishery production order as well as the safety of Chinese fishermen's lives and property.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs (People's Republic of China)

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Official Statements