VARIOUS: Taiwan and Hong Kong demonstrators protest over disputed South China Sea islands
- Title: VARIOUS: Taiwan and Hong Kong demonstrators protest over disputed South China Sea islands
- Date: 18th June 2011
- Summary: ++MONOCHROME AND MUTE++ WASHINGTON DC, USA (ORIGINALLY 4:3) (FILE - 19 JANUARY , 1960) (REUTERS) EXTERIOR OF WHITE HOUSE JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER NOBUSUKE KISHI AND UNITED STATES PRESIDENT DWIGHT EISENHOWER SITTING DOWN KISHI AND UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF STATE CHRISTIAN HERTER SIGNING DOCUMENTS MEETING IN PROGRESS KISHI AND IKE SHAKING HANDS
- Reuters ID: LVAB6UZXIM42KK6LTEZYBHTSP9CW
- Location: Taiwan, Province of China, Usa, Japan, Hong Kong, China
- Country: Taiwan
- Duration: 00:00:23
- Aspect Ratio:
- Topics: International Relations,Politics
- Story Text: Demonstrators gathered in Taiwan and Hong Kong on Friday (June 17) in protest over disputed islands in the South China Sea.
Various countries claim sovereignty over the islands, known as Diaoyu Islands by the Chinese and Taiwanese, and Senkaku Islands by the Japanese.
Dozens of protesters gathered in the Taiwanese capital Taipei on Friday and called for stronger role by its government to protect their fishing rights in the coastal waters near the islands.
Police officers were on guard, as protesters shouted "Protect fishermen's livelihoods" and "Defend South Sea sovereignty" and held up signs and banners.
Hsiao Wen-yi, the president of Taiwan's Fishing Labour Rights Association, called for the government to "toughen up" to protect fishermen's rights.
"Toughen up. The government should toughen up to defend the Diaoyu Islands. We need to emphasize our ownership, and kick the Japanese out of the Diaoyu Islands. Diaoyu Islands is ours, this is our firm stance as fishermen," he said.
On Friday, Taiwanese Foreign Minister Timothy Yang reiterated Taiwan's stance on the disputed islands, but said the issue should be resolved through peaceful means.
"Our claim of sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands has never changed, and our stance is also that the dispute around the area should be solved through peaceful and rational negotiations. The resources in the surrounding waters should be shared and developed together. Our fishing rights should be settled," he said.
Angry demonstrators in Hong Kong also marched down to the U.S. consulate to protest over the disputed islands and to hand in an official petition.
"I think it is totally ridiculous. Since historically, geographically, Diaoyu Islands are part of Chinese territory," said Leung Kow-Hung, a Hong Kong legislator.
The islands were reverted to Japan in 1972 and the country had regarded the islands as an integral part of Japan.
Tension over the islands rose sharply last September when Japan detained a Chinese skipper whose trawler collided with Japanese patrol boats near the disputed islands.
The two sides had been at odds over China's search for natural gas and oil in the area. They agreed in 2008 on principle to resolve the feud by jointly developing gas fields.
However, efforts have foundered since then, when Japan accused China of drilling for gas in violation of the agreement.
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