S. Korea "deeply regrettable" over Japan's territorial claim

11:17, September 10, 2010      

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South Korea expressed "deep regret" Friday over Japan's renewed territorial claim to a set of disputed islets lying halfway between the two Asian neighbors.

In its 2010 defense white paper approved on the same day, Tokyo stated the islets, called Dokdo in South Korea and Takeshima in Japan, are traditionally part of Japanese territory despite remaining disputes.

"We demand Japan immediately retract (the claim)," an official at Seoul's foreign ministry said in a statement. "We would once again like to make it clear that Dokdo is our territory historically, geographically and by international laws. We will resolutely deal with any unjust attempt to violate our sovereignty over Dokdo."

The claim in the defense white paper, the first by the liberal- leaning Democratic Part of Japan, is "unhelpful" for Seoul-Tokyo ties, the official said.

A set of rocky outcroppings in the East Sea, controlled by South Korea, has been a constant source of diplomatic feuds whenever Japan renewed its sovereignty claims in school textbooks and official documents.

Source: Xinhua


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