Japan protests China ships' entry into waters near isles

July 11, 2012 06:13

TOKYO - Japan's government lodged a protest with China against the entry of Chinese patrol ships into waters near disputed islands in the East China Sea, the top government spokesman said on Wednesday.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said three Chinese fishery patrol ships entered waters near the uninhabited islands, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, and which are claimed not only by Beijing and Tokyo but also Taipei.

The three ships eventually exited the waters but two of them were still sailing in the contiguous zone as of 10:30 a.m. (0130 GMT), with Japanese patrol ships keeping close watch, Fujimura said.

The incident comes after Japan said last week it was considering a plan to buy them from private landowners.

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