SEOUL, South Korea — An official said South Korea and Japan are conducting a joint investigation into whether a South Korean fishing boat violated Japan's exclusive economic zone.
South Korean Coast Guard official Ko Jae-young says Japan chased the Korean boat Thursday in waters 40 miles (70 kilometers) east of islands controlled by South Korea but claimed by Japan.
The probe comes two days before Japan's top diplomat visits Seoul for talks.
The countries have long been at odds over the ownership of rocky outcroppings between the Korean peninsula and Japan.
Ownership of the islands is central to the countries' dispute over the demarcation of their exclusive economic zones.