Japan

US sides with Japan against China over disputed islands


Published

Yesterday two American B52 bombers flew into a newly established “air defense identification zone” put in place by China over the weekend which covers a group of disputed islands known as the Senkaku islands in Japan and the Diaoyu islands in China.

The move is bound to inflame the diplomatic row between Japan and China, which is already highly charged, and now the United States which has decided to side with Japan.

Japan claims sovereignty over the uninhabited but potentially oil rich islands. That sovereignty has been disputed by both the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and the Taiwan (Republic of China – ROC) since they were transferred to Japan by the United States in 1971.

President Xi Jinping has taken a strident line about all disputed islands in the various seas around China and is facing off complaints from Japan, Taiwan, Philippines and Vietnam. Most of the island groups involved are, at best, rocklets and in some cases just shallow shoals, but all hold potential mineral or fisheries wealth.

You can find a map of the disputed area here.

The announcement of the new ADIZ by China as published on the Xinhuanet website is as follows:

“Announcement of the Aircraft Identification Rules for the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone of the P.R.C.

BEIJING, Nov. 23 (Xinhua) — China’s Ministry of National Defense issued an announcement of the aircraft identification rules for the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone of the People’s Republic of China. Following is the full text:

Announcement of the Aircraft Identification Rules for the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone of the People’s Republic of China

Issued by the Ministry of National Defense on November 23

The Ministry of National Defense of the People’s Republic of China, in accordance with the Statement by the Government of the People’s Republic of China on Establishing the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone, now announces the Aircraft Identification Rules for the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone as follows:

First, aircraft flying in the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone must abide by these rules.

Second, aircraft flying in the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone must provide the following means of identification:

1. Flight plan identification. Aircraft flying in the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone should report the flight plans to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China or the Civil Aviation Administration of China.

2. Radio identification. Aircraft flying in the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone must maintain the two-way radio communications, and respond in a timely and accurate manner to the identification inquiries from the administrative organ of the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone or the unit authorized by the organ.

3. Transponder identification. Aircraft flying in the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone, if equipped with the secondary radar transponder, should keep the transponder working throughout the entire course.

4. Logo identification. Aircraft flying in the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone must clearly mark their nationalities and the logo of their registration identification in accordance with related international treaties.

Third, aircraft flying in the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone should follow the instructions of the administrative organ of the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone or the unit authorized by the organ. China’s armed forces will adopt defensive emergency measures to respond to aircraft that do not cooperate in the identification or refuse to follow the instructions.

Fourth, the Ministry of National Defense of the People’s Republic of China is the administrative organ of the East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone.

Fifth, the Ministry of National Defense of the People’s Republic of China is responsible for the explanation of these rules.

Sixth, these rules will come into force at 10 a.m. November 23, 2013.”

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