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Japan vs s.korea dispute over the dokdo islands

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by Njowepo, Aug 10, 2012.

  1. Njowepo

    Njowepo JF-Expert Member

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    Aug 10, 2012
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    [h=1]South Korea's Lee Myung-bak visits disputed islands[/h] [​IMG] Lee Myung-bak would be the first South Korean leader to visit the islands
    South Korea's president is visiting islands also claimed by Japan, in a move set to raise diplomatic tensions.
    Lee Myung-bak flew to the islands, which are known as Dokdo in South Korea and as Takeshima in Japan.
    A Kyodo news agency report said Japan had recalled its ambassador from South Korea.
    Both South Korea and Japan say they have a historical claim to the islands, and the issue has been a long-standing thorn in relations.
    The islands, which are roughly equidistant from the two countries, are small but lie in fishing grounds which could also contain large gas deposits.
    Continue reading the main story [h=2]Analysis[/h] [​IMG] Mariko Oi BBC News, Tokyo
    The Japanese government's response has been swift - Tokyo has summoned the South Korean ambassador and recalled its own envoy from Seoul.
    The dispute over these islands is a sensitive issue and one that has often been a hurdle to the otherwise improving relations between the two countries. Many Japanese media outlets say it is inevitable that the bilateral relationship will suffer.
    Japan has a number of territorial rows, with China and Russia as well as South Korea, and they tend to attract considerable public attention.

    South Korea has stationed a small coastguard detachment on the islands since 1954.
    Mr Lee is the first South Korean president to visit them. Then Prime Minister Han Seung-soo visited in 2008, sparking a row with Japan.
    'No understanding' The visit was announced by Mr Lee's spokeswoman early on Friday.
    The South Korean president was first due to visit Ulleung Island before flying on by helicopter to the disputed area, his spokeswoman said.
    Reports from Japan said the government had both recalled its own envoy and summoned the South Korean ambassador in Tokyo.
    Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba said he had "no understanding" of why Mr Lee had decided to visit the islands at this time.
    "I strongly protested to the ambassador and I told him that our countries' leaders have agreed we should manage relations from a wider perspective," he said.
    Continue reading the main story [​IMG]

    • Known as Dokdo (Solitary islands) in Korea, Takeshima (Bamboo islands) in Japan
    • Also known as Liancourt rocks
    • Claimed by Japan and South Korea, but occupied by South Korea since 1954
    • Just 230,000 sq m in size, with no fresh water
    • But surrounding waters valuable for their fishing


    South Korea's Yonhap news agency said the country's military had stepped up security in the area ahead of the visit.
    Mr Lee's visit comes with the two countries' football teams due to play off for the Olympic bronze medal later in the day.
    It also comes shortly before South Korea marks the anniversary of the end of Japanese colonial rule.
    The issue has flared sporadically in recent years amid lingering antipathy between the two nations over historical issues.
    Last month, Japan filed a formal diplomatic protest with South Korea after a man rammed his truck against the gate of its embassy in Seoul to protest against Japan's claim to the islands.
    In 2008 South Korea withdrew its ambassador to Japan after a book for Japanese teachers reportedly said Japan owned the islands.

    Hii issue imekaa kimalawi malawi maana Wakorea wanaclaim ni kisiwa chao toka 1954
     
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