China rebuffs Japan claims over Diaoyu

| Updated: May 22, 2017 00:28 IST

Beijing [China], May 21 (ANI): Japan has lodged a fresh diplomatic protest with China accusing the country of unilaterally escalating the situation in the region by flying a drone near the Senkakus islands in the East China Sea waters. China rebuffed Japan's claim that Beijing was escalating tensions over the Diaoyu island. "Of course, we cannot accept the so-called negotiations or protests of the Japanese side," The Global Times quoted Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying, as saying, during a daily news briefing. Drone, along with four China Coast Guard vessels, entered Japanese waters around the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea on Thursday morning, the Japan Coast Guard said, adding that what appeared to be a drone was seen flying above them. The Senkaku islands are claimed by China and Taiwan, which call them Diaoyu and Tiaoyutai, respectively. "As far as I know, the Chinese Coast Guard did not send or fly the unmanned aerial vehicle. It was used by the media for aerial photography; it was not a military action as some media have hyped," she said. Hua even asserted that it was China's "inherent right" to conduct regular patrols in its own territory. Yoshihide Suga, Japan's top government spokesman, told a regular briefing that the incident took place Thursday and that Japan lodged a "strong protest." Coast Guard ships from the two nations routinely patrol the area, known for rich fishing grounds. Japan dispatched four planes, including two F-15 fighters and an airborne warning and control system plane to waters surrounding the islets, Japan's defense ministry said. The Senkaku Islands are a group of Japan-administered uninhabited islets betweeen Okinawa and Taiwan. (ANI)

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