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Luo Yuan: Do Ryukyu Islands belong to Japan?

(People's Daily Online)

16:39, July 27, 2012

Japan claims sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands since it believes they were part of Ryukyu Islands. According to the San Francisco Peace Treaty in 1951, the United States would conduct the trusteeship over the Ryukyu Islands, including the Diaoyu Islands. In 1972, the U. S. authority transferred executive power over the Ryukyu Islands back to Japan and the Diaoyu Islands are also included. However, there are four problems which deserve attention.

First, the San Francisco Peace Treaty is illegal and illegitimate. On Sept. 4, 1951, the United State unilaterally invited 52 countries to attend the peace conference in San Francisco, which focus on how to handle the postwar issues in Japan while China was excluded at that time. According to the Treaty, Japan agreed to place the Bonin Islands and the Ryukyu Islands under the U.N. trusteeship with the United States as the sole administrative authority. It is a couple of days later that the Chinese government issued a statement to refuse to accept the illegitimate treaty.

Second, the Diaoyu Islands belong to China rather than the Ryukyu Islands. According to the San Francisco Peace Treaty, the territories placed under the U.N. trusteeship do not include the Diaoyu Islands, which have been an inherent part of China since ancients times. The islands were marked on the map of China as early as the beginning of Ming Dynasty, and even the Japanese government labeled the Diaoyu Islands as part of China’s territory in 1785.

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