© Kyodo / Reuters
Japan Today: Japan adopts plan to protect interests on 148 inhabited offshore islands
TOKYO — The Japanese government formulated Friday a basic plan governing its maintenance of 148 inhabited offshore islands, apparently eyeing China’s expansionary activities at sea.
“As a maritime country, we must take long-term, systematic measures to protect, maintain and expand peace, security and our maritime interests,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told a meeting of the government’s maritime policy task force that approved the plan.
“The situation surrounding our seas is increasing in severity,” he said.
China has overlapping territorial claims with Japan in the East China Sea and has been developing offshore reefs in the South China Sea to the alarm not only of Association of Southeast Asian Nations members but of China’s neighbors.
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Update #1: Preserve remote island populations to safeguard the nation’s territory (Japan News/The Yomiuri Shimbun)
Update #2: Japan nationalizes 273 islets, aims to develop dozens of outposts amid territorial rows (RT).
WNU Editor: The Japanese are clearly expecting China to make more territorial claims.