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Japan considers deporting Chinese activists, defusing feud

TOKYO - Japan is considering deporting 14 Chinese activists arrested over their landing on a disputed island as soon as Friday in a move that could defuse a worsening feud between Tokyo and Beijing, Japanese media reported on Thursday.
The activists, seven of whom landed on Wednesday on the rocky, uninhabited isle in the East China Sea claimed by both nations, have been transferred to Okinawa for questioning by police on Thursday morning, public broadcaster NHK said.
If they did nothing else illegal, the government would deport the activists after questioning, it said.
The feud over a chain of islands, which lie near potentially rich gas reserves, is one of several disputes fraying Japan's ties with Asian neighbors China and South Korea decades after the end of World War Two.
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