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China, Japan ships warn each other over dispute

Tokyo, Sep 15 (): Japanese and Chinese government ships warned each other on Friday near the disputed islands in sea waters in East China Sea. Meanwhile, Tokyo asked Beijing to safeguard its citizens from reported assaults and anti-Japan protests in China.

Six Chinese marine patrol vessels reached Japanese-controlled waters on Friday near the disputed islands and China took its first move since Japanese government said that they have bought the disputed islands this week, a Japanese Coast Guard said. He further added one of Japanese patrol ships warned the Chinese ships, which left the area later.

China said the Chinese ships were implementing “law enforcement” to indicate their power over the disputed islands called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China. China was firm, with its foreign ministry delivering a statement claiming that the boats were watching sovereign territory.

Japanese coast guard said three of the Chinese vessels left the waters after sometime and the remaining three have also left the place now.

Meanwhile, state media published commentaries in Japan, saying anger has spread to Chinese streets in some of the major Chinese cities. Reports from Beijing said protesters were shouting slogans outside Japanese embassy and also in front of Japanese restaurants, in which at least 6 Japanese have been attacked.

Japanese visiting or living in China were cautioned to take more precautions after harassment and assaults were reported in Shanghai, a famous tourist destination and a base city for Japanese businesses.

Travel agencies from China have said that the tours to Japan have been cancelled — a move which would hit Japan’s tourism industry, about one-fourth of its revenue is from the Chinese tourists.

Japan confirmed its ownership on the islands in 1895 and they possess them ever since, but only for a short period during post-war Occupation, before U.S. returned the islands to them. Taiwan and China started claiming them in 1970s after it was said that the sea near the islands may hold oil deposits and vast gas.