• Kyodo News


A former Japan Coast Guard member has said he has no regrets about leaking video footage showing collisions in September between a Chinese trawler and Japanese patrol boats near the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, according to a Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker.

“I wanted the public to know what was happening at sea. I was determined to do it while thinking about the future of Japan, so I have no regrets about it,” Masaharu Isshiki was quoted as saying Wednesday by LDP Upper House member Seiichi Eto.

Isshiki’s remarks were made during a lecture in the Diet building hosted by a group composed mainly of LDP conservative lawmakers, Tachiagare Nippon (Sunrise Party of Japan) and Nippon Soshinto (Spirit of Japan Party). About 40 people, including former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, attended.

At Isshiki’s request, his address was closed to the media.

Isshiki allegedly copied the footage of the collisions in mid-October onto a USB data storage device from a shared computer aboard the coast guard patrol boat Uranami, on which he was serving as a navigator, and posted clips taken from it on YouTube at an Internet cafe in Kobe in November.

Prosecutors decided in January not to indict Isshiki, a former member of the Kobe Coast Guard Office.

The prosecutors said it was undeniable that there were shortcomings in the management of the footage on the part of the coast guard, adding there was no malice in the way Isshiki obtained the footage and it was not used for personal gain.

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