Taiwan Further Warming Relations with Japan

Dating as far back as the Ming Dynasty (14th to 17th Century), the original Chinese island name was Diaoyu and the Japanese name, Uotsun, both literally meaning, “Angling.”

The 16th round of talks between Japan and Taiwan fishing rights for the island of Diaoyutai (釣魚台) is to take place in February, 2009, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) on Janurary 06, 2009.

Taiwan Government Reaffirms Soveriegnty over Diaoyutai islands and strives to protect the rights and itnerest of Taiwanese fishermen.

Taiwan Government Reaffirms Soveriegnty over Diaoyutai islands and strives to protect the rights and interests of Taiwanese fishermen.

In the dispute over the sovereignty of the Diaoyutai islands, Taiwanese government has always maintained that the islands are part of its terrirotry and has been determined to protect Taiwan’s sovereignty over them.  It continues to hold any [related] disputes through diplomatic channels in a peaceful manner.  Currently, the Japanese army are on guard along the coast of the islands and fire shots, sinking the Taiwanese fishermen boats who cross or enter the region.

Although 15 fishery negotiations have been held by either sides, no concensus has been ultimately confirmed.  It is hoped that the Japanese government will enter further negotiations on fishing rights to finally reach and end to the disputes and preserve the cordial relations between the two countries.

Map and location of the Diaoyutai islands.

Map and location of the Diaoyutai islands.

Association for East Asian Relations, Secretary-General Peter Tsai (蔡明耀), spoke that since neither side would relinquish territorial claims to the chain, both countries had agreed to shelve their differences and focus on pragmatic matters such as fishing access to each other’s waters, access fees and maritime boundaries, all of which have been ont he table at each round of talks. It is still unclear as to what level of representatives from either side will attend the meeting since the agenda has not been officialized.

Tsaid said there have been tension with Japan for the past year since a Japanese coast guard patrol vessel and a Taiwanese recreational fishing boat, collided in the disputed waters [of Diaoyutai islands].  While no one have been accounted for injury, the fishing boat sank and have not been recovered.  The Japanese patrol vessel claimed that the Taiwanese boat had been driving carelessly on the water at the time of the incident and had no sign of warning calls.  The anglers reported that the Japanese vessel had purpousely collided with the boat, the disputes came to an uncompromisable end.  The Japanese eventually released the Taiwanese crew, apologized and compensated the captain.

(Photo taken in June, 2007.)  A group local activists (R) holding anti-Japan banners calling for the Japanese to get out of the disputed Diaoyu islands, hand over a pedition addressed to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to a representative (far L) from the Japans consulate in Hong Kong, 15 August 2007. Around 20 protesters from Hong Kong, Taiwan and mainland China had planned to sail 12 August to the disputed Diaoyu Island and make landfall 15 August, the anniversary of Japans World War II surrender, but bad weather forced them to scrap the trip. Japan claimed the islands in 1895 but they were temporarily put under US control after World War II and returned to Japan in 1972 together with Okinawa. They are also claimed by China and Taiwan

(Photo taken in June, 2007.) A group local activists (R) holding anti-Japan banners calling for the Japanese to get out of the disputed Diaoyu islands, hand over a pedition addressed to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to a representative (far L) from the Japan's consulate in Hong Kong, 15 August 2007. Around 20 protesters from Hong Kong, Taiwan and mainland China had planned to sail 12 August to the disputed Diaoyu Island and make landfall 15 August, the anniversary of Japan's World War II surrender, but bad weather forced them to scrap the trip. Japan claimed the islands in 1895 but they were temporarily put under US control after World War II and returned to Japan in 1972 together with Okinawa. They are also claimed by China and Taiwan

Citing as an example in the increase of cultural exchanges among youths, Tsai added, “Taiwan-Japan relations weathered a storm last year [and] we are confident that bilateral ties will only improve from now on.”

In 2008, the Tokyo-city government invited 60 Taiwanese students to a one-week all expense paid trip to Japan and the quota is expected to rise 100 by this year, 2009.  Taiwan extended the generosity and invited 20 Japanese students back in 2007 and is as well expected to raise the quota for 2009’s program.    Talks are in progress to expand direct flight routes between the two countries and are scheduled for next month in Tokyo.

In November of 2008, last year, “Taiwan welcomes four-legged friends and blind people from Japan.”  The Taoyuan International Airport of Taipei, Taiwan, received in total 30 special furry friends and their visually-impared Japanese owners and their families on November 16.

17 Taiwanese vision-impared people and their guide dogs extended their welcome at the Grand Hotel in Taipei City upon the guests’ arrival.  The guests were the centre of attention during their visit, however unfortunately enough, were blocked by the security of Taiwan Democracy Memorial Hall due to the no-pet regulations of the area.

Even after insisting that the four legged friends are guide dogs and not normal house-hold pets, the group were still banned from entering the park.  Later, the chief of the CKS Memorial Hall, Tseng Kun-ti apologized for the incident, explaining that the people are still unfamilar to the idea of guide-dogs.  These especially trained dogs are so rare in Taiwan, the general public remain unaware the proper way to behave around them and are often mistaken for house-hold pets.

Currently, all [Taiwanese] charter flights are free to land at any Japanese airport not listed as direct-flight destination, however once the airport approves for regular direct flights from Taiwan, they may no longer accept charter flights, which raises a number of conflicts.

Japans Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (L) and his wife Akie wave before boarding an aircraft as they depart Tokyos Haneda airport to attend the meeting of Asia-Pacific Economic Coorpoeration (APEC) leaders summit in Sydney September 7, 2007. With its cabinet jolted by scandals and the opposition in control of parliaments upper house, Japan faces a policy vacuum that bodes ill for fixing creaking social welfare systems or loosening the governments grip on the economy.

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (L) and his wife Akie wave before boarding an aircraft as they depart Tokyo's Haneda airport to attend the meeting of Asia-Pacific Economic Coorpoeration (APEC) leaders' summit in Sydney September 7, 2007. With its cabinet jolted by scandals and the opposition in control of parliament's upper house, Japan faces a policy vacuum that bodes ill for fixing creaking social welfare systems or loosening the government's grip on the economy.

Due to the current political situation involving China, Japan and Taiwan, the former Japanese prime minister, Shinzo Abe will not be able to visit the [Taiwan] island in the coming months.  Abe is known for his Taiwan-friendly stance and have been reported to visit early this year, but have been cancelled to help his Liberal Democratic Part keep a hold on power.

Abe is known to have visited Taiwan on past ocassions and previous President [of Taiwan,] Lee Tung-Hui have been reported to travel to Japan  on visiting the Prime Minister as well.  Warm relations seem to continue up until the latest intrusion from China’s government which voices its protest in the warm relations between the two countries.

Shinzo Abe was born into a political family, studied in Political Science in Japan and the United States and entered into the world of politics since 1993, marked by the winning of the elcection in the Yamaguchi Prefecture.  In 2006, Abe is the youngest Prime Minister at the age of 52, since Fumimaro Konoe in 1941.

Quoted from wikipedia.org,

“… Abe is respected among politicians in Taiwan who are part of the Pan-Green Coalition seeking Taiwanese independenceChen Shui-bian welcomed Abe’s ministership.  Part of Abe’s appeal in Taiwan is historical: his grandfather Nobusuke Kishi was pro-Taiwan, and his great-uncle Eisaku Sato was the last prime minister to visit Taiwan while in office.”

Abe is known to be Democratic and pro-supporter of Taiwan independence and supports Taiwan in joining the World Health Organization (W.H.O.).

Here, I quote from a Korean site (it’s all in English) on how China opposes the warm relations between Taiwan and Japan.

“China has long opposed Lee’s Japan visit because it considers him among Taiwan’s most hard-core pro-independence leaders. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Lee’s visit was not expected to affect relations with China. ‘I don’t think it will have an impact’ on Tokyo-Beijing ties, Abe told reporters. ‘My understanding is that he has come to Japan in a private capacity.’ On Lee’s wish to visit Yasukuni, Abe said, ‘As Japan is a free country, it is up to himself to decide.’ “

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~ by Lan on 2008 ThuUTC2009-01-08T09:33:15+00:00. 15.

One Response to “Taiwan Further Warming Relations with Japan”

  1. Taiwan is a nice place to travel, It is looking beautiful and given information is also good….

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