BEIJING – China has been taking an increasingly hard line against Japan over the Senkaku Islands, accusing Tokyo of propagating “three nos” — no recognition, no shelving and no dialogue, it was learned Saturday.
China believes that if Japan continues to say no, its leaders won’t be able to hold talks, Chinese government sources said.
First, the sources said, China argues that Japan does not recognize there is a territorial dispute over the uninhabited Japanese-administered East China Sea islets, which it calls Diaoyu.
Japan has maintained the islets are its inherent territory and thus no dispute exists.
Second, Beijing has criticized Tokyo for denying China’s claim that past leaders agreed to shelve the issue. Third, the Chinese government accuses Japan of not agreeing to dialogue based on the shared recognition that there is a territorial dispute.
The argument of the three nos has been mentioned by key Chinese officials in recent months.
A high-ranking Chinese official said that although Abe says the door is open to dialogue with China, the two cannot even stand in front of the door as long as the three nos persist. Unless Japan changes its stance, the bilateral relationship will become inflexible with no possible solutions in sight, the official added.
On Sunday, a Bahamian-registered marine survey ship, Discoverer 2, was spotted in Japan’s exclusive economic zone off the Senkakus, Japan Coast Guard officials said.
The vessel previously sailed in Japan’s EEZ on June 17, 18 and 23 and transmitted a message to a coast guard patrol ship indicating it belonged to a Chinese organization and had obtained approval from the Chinese government as the waters lie in China’s EEZ. This is the third time this year that the ship has been found in Japan’s EEZ. It was last spotted in the EEZ on June 23.