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UN to consider validity of China’s claim over disputed Senkaku Islands

Senkaku Islands from the air

Senkaku Islands from the air

The United Nations is planning to consider later this year the scientific validity of a claim by China that a group of disputed islands in the East China Sea are part of its territory, although Japan says the world body should not be involved.

Tensions over the uninhabited islands – located near rich fishing grounds and potentially huge oil-and-gas reserves – flared after Japan’s government purchased them from a private Japanese owner in September, sparking violent anti-Japanese protests across China and a military standoff.

Taiwan also claims the islands, known as the Diaoyu Islands in China, the Senkaku Islands in Japan and Tiaoyutai in Taiwan.

In a submission to the U.N. Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf, China claims that the continental shelf in the East China Sea is a natural prolongation of China’s land territory and that it includes the disputed islands.

Under the U.N. convention, a country can extend its 200-nautical-mile economic zone if it can prove that the continental shelf is a natural extension of its land mass. The U.N. commission assesses the scientific validity of claims, but any disputes have to be resolved between states, not by the commission.

China said the “Diaoyu Dao upfold zone” – the islands – is located between the East China Sea shelf basin and the Okinawa Trough. “The Okinawa Trough is the natural termination of the continental shelf of (the East China Sea),” it said.

China also told the commission that it was still negotiating with other states on the delimitation of the continental shelf.

“Recommendations of the commission with regard to the submission will not prejudice future delimitation of the continental shelf between China and the states concerned,” said the executive summary of China’s submission published on the commission’s website.


The commission said consideration of China’s claim would be included in the provisional agenda of a meeting of the body due to be held in New York from July 15 to August 30.

In a letter to the commission, Japan’s U.N. mission argued that China’s submission should not be considered.

“There is no doubt that the SenkakuIslands are an inherent part of the territory of Japan in light of historical facts and based upon international law. The SenkakuIslands are under the valid control of Japan,” it said.

The islands were put under Japan’s control in 1895 and were part of the post-World War Two U.S. military occupation zone from 1945-72. They were then returned to Tokyo by U.S. authorities in a decision China and Taiwan later contested.

China responded to Japan’s letter by calling Tokyo’s claim to the islands “illegal and invalid.”

“Diaoyu Dao and its affiliated islands have been inherent territory of China since ancient times,” its U.N. mission said in a letter.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged China and Japan in September to let “cool heads” prevail in the dispute, but her pleas fell on deaf ears.

After Japan’s purchase of the islands, protests in China saw some Japanese businesses looted, Japanese citizens attacked and auto and other Japanese manufacturers reported considerably lower sales in the country.

More recently, Japanese military planes have scrambled numerous times against Chinese planes approaching airspace over the islands. Chinese planes have also been launched to shadow Japanese planes elsewhere over the East China Sea. Patrol vessels from the two countries have also played a tense game of cat-and-mouse in the waters near the disputed islands.

Source: Reuters “U.N. to consider validity of China’s claim over disputed islands”

About chankaiyee2

Author of the book "Tiananmen's Tremendous Achievements" about how with the help of Tiananmen Protests, talented scholars with moral integrity seized power in the Party and state and brought prosperity to China. The second edition of the book will be published within a few days to mark the 25th anniversary of Tiananmen Protests All the parts in the first edition remain in the second edition with a few changes due to information available later and better understanding. There are also some changes for improvements of style. The new parts are Chapters 12-19 on events in China after the first edition was published: The fierce power struggle for succession between reformists and conservatives; Xi Jinping winning all elders’ support during his mysterious disappearance for 2 weeks in early September, 2012; and Xi Jinping Cyclone. Chan Kai Yee's new book: SPACE ERA STRATEGY: The Way China Beats The US An eye-opening book that tells the truth how the US is losing to China. The US is losing as it adopts the outdated strategy of Air-Sea Battle while China adopts the space era strategy to pursue integrated space and air capabilities: It is losing due to its diplomacy that has given rise to Russian-Chinese alliance. US outdated strategy has enabled China to catch up and surpass the US in key weapons: Hypersonic weapons (HGV) that Pentagon regards as the weapon that will dominate the world in the future. Aerospaceplane in China’s development of space-air bomber that can engage enemy anywhere in the world within an hour and destroy an entire aircraft carrier battle group within minutes. Anti-satellite (ASAT) weapons, anti-ASAT weapons, stealth aircrafts, drones, AEW&C, etc. The book gives detailed descriptions of China’s weapon development based on information mainly from Chinese sources that the author monitors closely. U.S. Must Not Be Beaten by China! China is not a democracy. Its political system cannot prevent the emergence of a despotic leader or stop such a leader when he begins to bring disasters to people. A few decades ago, Mao Zedong, the worst tyrant in world history did emerge and bring disasters to Chinese people. He wanted to fight a nuclear war to replace capitalism with communism but could not bring nuclear holocaust to world people as China was too weak and poor at that time. If a despot like Mao Zedong emerges when China has surpassed the US in military strength, world people will suffer the misery experienced by Chinese people in Mao era. China surpassing the US in GDP is not something to worry about as China has the heavy burden to satisfy its huge population, but China surpassing the US in military strength will be world people’s greatest concern if China remains an autocracy. US people are of much better quality than Chinese people. What they lack is a wise leader to adopt the correct strategy and diplomacy and the creative ways to use its resources in developing its military capabilities. I hope that with the emergence of a great leader, the US can put an end to its decline and remain number one in the world. China, US, space era strategy, air-sea battle, space-air bomber, arms race, weapon development, chan kai yee


5 thoughts on “UN to consider validity of China’s claim over disputed Senkaku Islands

  1. Reblogged this on Oyia Brown.


    Posted by OyiaBrown | January 25, 2013, 6:47 pm
  2. Reblogged this on middlekingdom1of10boyz and commented:
    I think this is going be a problem for China when they have no one on their side when the UN finds that Japan has the historic right. There is no way around the 1895 ownership claim and China knows that they lost the war in a big way. IF the UN overrides that claim, it will open up boundary disputes related to wars since then. Sure glad that the Mexican-American war was prior to that. All of the western US will be Mexico based on claimed land due to war disputes otherwise.


    Posted by 1of10boyz | January 26, 2013, 6:26 pm


  1. Pingback: The way forward for China’s economy « China Daily Mail - January 26, 2013

  2. Pingback: China, Japan move to cool down territorial dispute « China Daily Mail - January 26, 2013

  3. Pingback: Japan shocks China on Senkakus | China Daily Mail - April 12, 2013

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