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Diplomacy, Nos.13-15  Mar. 3, 2013

(NO CONFLICTS DESIRED) Don’t Disrupt Exchanges Now–Japan, China Must Aim to Be "Great Countries of Peace" in East Asia

Sharing Vision of Peace, Civilization, Friendship With the objective of promoting development and friendship between Japan and China, “The New Japan-China Friendship Committee for the 21st Century” was formed in 2003 as a private advisory panel to both governments. The foundation of the council was agreed on at a Japan-China summit held in May the same year. For five years up to 2008, I was involved as the chairman of the Japanese side. Although I had relations with China on a business basis, I myself was not an expert on China. But I undertook the duty partly... [Read more]


PANEL DISCUSSION: Solution to Japan-China Senkaku Problem, Future of Bilateral Relations

Photo : Miyamato Yuji(L), Takahara Akio(C), Akiyama Masahiro(R)

Three experts on Japan-China relations, who have held talks with Chinese intellectuals on various occasions, discussed on Oct. 3 the background to bilateral relations that have soured in the face of the Senkaku Islands issue and ways of resolving the problem. The three agreed that Japan and China still have a long way to go before they can settle the Senkaku issue and now need to work out an agreement to avoid a military clash. They also said that while reasonable and cool-headed attitudes are indispensable... [Read more]

Diplomacy, KUDO_Yasushi, No.12  Nov. 8, 2012

Japan, China Need To Manage, Contain Problems Over Senkaku (Diaoyu) Islands

KUDO Yasushi

(The following speech was given by Mr. Kudo at the Council of Councils’ Asia Regional Conference held in Singapore on Oct. 31, 2012) I would like to briefly express my thoughts on how we can achieve a peaceful solution to the Senkaku Islands issue (Diaoyu in Chinese), which is becoming a source of grave conflict between Japan and China. Let me clarify my basic stance on this matter. This statement expresses my personal opinions and does not represent the Japanese government’s official position. But the aim of my statement is same as the government’s position in that we are keen to... [Read more]

Diplomacy, No.12  Nov. 8, 2012

Japan-China Discord and Cooperation over East China Sea

Japan and China have fallen into a state of serious antagonism, despite this year marking the 40th anniversary of the normalization of their diplomatic relations. This unstable situation was triggered by a set of events that occurred around the Senkaku Islands, which lie in the middle of the East China Sea. The problem of the Senkakus has become a major obstacle in achieving a rational approach to building a strategic partnership of mutual benefit between the two countries. The following is a historical review of cooperation and discord over the East China Sea between Japan and China prior to this year’s major stalemate.... [Read more]

Diplomacy, No.12  Nov. 8, 2012

Japan's "Pacific Century"

Photo : Hayashi Yoshimasa

The Meaning of “Pacific Century” U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stressed the importance of the Asia-Pacific region in a speech she delivered under the title of “America’s Pacific Century” at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in Hawaii in November last year. Asia accounts for about half of the world’s population and has several of the world’s largest and fastest-growing economies. It also has the world’s leading ports and seaways. The U.S. Government is aiming to re-strengthen its relationship with the region under President Barack Obama, America’s first “Pacific President.”... [Read more]

Diplomacy, No.12  Nov. 8, 2012

Deciphering Japan’s Territorial Issues

What is needed at this moment in time is a call for wisdom to relativize and sectionalize the Senkaku issue. There is also a need to acknowledge the route toward “power politics” and “peaceful emergence” in China. Historical Background to Overheating Takeshima Issue Japan has long been saddled with two territorial problems since the end of World War II – the Northern Territories and Takeshima Islands. Since around 1970, this has grown to three with the addition of the issue of the Senkaku Islands. At present, all of them have become suddenly and acutely exacerbated.... [Read more]

Diplomacy, No.12  Nov. 8, 2012

3 Principles for Resolving Territorial Standoff in Northeast Asia

Preface There are three continuing territorial issues in the postwar era involving Japan. These are over the Northern Territories and the Takeshima islets which Japan has been seeking to take back from Russia and South Korea, respectively, and the Senkaku Islands which China and Taiwan want to take back from Japan. Japan has been making all-out efforts to resolve the issue of the Northern Territories. The Takeshima and Senkaku problems, while they have different backgrounds, have never become central issues in Japan’s relations with South Korea and China.... [Read more]

Diplomacy, No.12  Nov. 8, 2012

Opinion Poll: View of People in Japan on Sovereignty of Senkaku Islands

The survey asked people in Japan for their opinions on the recent nationalization by the government of Japan of three islets among the Senkaku Islands. The most common answer, provided by 36.8% of respondents, was that they ”do not appreciate” the government’s action, while 22.6% said they ”appreciate” the action. However, the poll also indicates that about half of the respondents support the government’s action to some extent when including the answer that they ”do not appreciate the action but think it was inevitable,” which was given by 27.1%. The survey also asked whether the issue of the Senkaku Islands can be solved through bilateral negotiations between Japan and China.... [Read more]

Diplomacy, No.12  Nov. 7, 2012

(UPDATED) Senkaku Islands and Japan's Territorial Rights

Photo : Ozaki Shigeyoshi

“Japan has established its territorial rights over the Senkaku Islands through deeds conducted up until its Cabinet decision in 1895, a series of actions after 1895, and the absence of protests by China and other countries for a long period of time, and this status has remained unchanged since the end of World War II.” Preface: Legal Theory of Occupation in International Law In May 1969, the United Nations Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East (ECAFE) released a survey report indicating the possible existence of abundant crude oil and natural gas resources in the waters surrounding the Senkaku Islands.... [Read more]

Diplomacy, No.12  Nov. 5, 2012

Japan To Improve Relations With China Through Tenacious Dialogue

Photo : Okada Katsuya

I, as Deputy Prime Minister, will devote myself to create an environment in which Japan and China maintain calm communication in good spirits, thereby further deepening the “Mutually Beneficial Relationship Based on Common Strategic Interests” as the leaders of the two countries have agreed upon to date, and expanding exchanges between the two peoples. Question 1: Confrontation between Japan and China has intensified after China reacted sharply to Japan’s purchase and possession of the Senkaku Islands. What prompted the Japanese government to acquire the Senkaku Islands at this... [Read more]