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Japan’s hardline rhetoric on Diaoyu is ‘playing with fire'

(People's Daily Online)

08:09, August 29, 2012

The Japanese government has gradually toughened its stance on the Diaoyu Islands issues.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda said the other day that Japan would strengthen security around islands, including the Diaoyu Islands, enhance management of remote islands through administrative and practical measures, and allow its Self-Defense Forces a greater role in maintaining public order on these islands. Japanese Defense Minister Satoshi Morimoto said that the Japan Self-Defense Forces "will not allow any foreign ship to approach (Japanese islands) even 1 millimeter." Japan's National Police Agency also said that it will prosecute Chinese activists if they land on the Diaoyu Islands again.

Previously, Japan had repeatedly claimed that the United States had reiterated that the U.S.-Japan security treaty applies to the Diaoyu Islands. Japan recently said in a targeted statement that it had reached consensus with the United States on enhancing bilateral operational cooperation, including dynamic defense cooperation involving joint surveillance and reconnaissance activities. According to the statement, it is necessary to reexamine the security treaty which was last modified more than 10 years ago.

The above remarks by Japanese leaders and senior officials are pep talks to the Japanese people, and blatant provocations to the outside world.

Such provocative remarks will do no good to Japan. The final result of the Diaoyu Islands issue will not be changed whether Japan has U.S. backing or the United States takes advantage of Japan to contain China.

China does not want to see its relations with Japan or regional cooperation process seriously hindered by the increasingly complex Diaoyu Islands issue.

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