China and Japan dispute who owns group of strategically placed islands

China and Japan dispute who owns group of strategically placed islands
JISHOU, HUNAN — While the local and Chinese governments draw international attention to our little part of this rock we call Earth, a more serious issue is brewing in the waters to the east, and in the streets all over China. China is once again in a territorial dispute with one of its neighbors, Japan. And this time it’s not about fish.* The dispute has to do with a group of small islands between Okinawa and Taiwan that the Japanese call Senkaku, the Chinese call DiaoYu and the Taiwanese call TiaoYu. As real estate they aren’t much to speak of, but they just so happen to be near suspected undersea oil and gas fields. Japan says the islands have been part of its territory since 1895, while China and Taiwan (who agree on this!) assert the islands were Chinese territory more than 300 years before Japan annexed them in the first Sino-Japanese War. While the three national governments exchange strongly worded communiqués, nationalistic Chinese and Japanese citizens have been taking to the streets and to the Internet to lodge their own protests. Just this week, I got an email from the US Embassy in Beijing advising Americans to avoid street ...
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