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Resolving Diaoyutais dispute through ICJ will be difficult: envoy

ROC Central News Agency

2012/10/01 18:50:06

Taipei, Oct. 1 (CNA) It will be difficult for Taiwan to resolve a territorial dispute involving Japan through the International Court of Justice (ICJ) because Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations, Shen Ssu-tsun, Taiwan's representative to Japan, said Monday.

Nevertheless, there are still other ways, including negotiation and arbitration, to settle the dispute over the sovereignty of the Diaoyutai Islands in the East China Sea, which are claimed by Taiwan, China and Japan, Shen said at a meeting of the Legislative Yuan's Foreign and National Defense Committee.

President Ma Ying-jeou's East China Sea Peace Initiative, which proposes the formation of bilateral or multilateral talks, is also an option, he added.

Tension over the issue has risen since the Japanese government purchased three islets in the island chain from private owners last month in an attempt to "nationalize" the resource-rich archipelago that is called the Senkaku Islands by Japan and the Diaoyu Islands by China.

The attempt sparked vicious protests against Japan in Taiwan and China. Shen was called back to Taipei to brief the government on the situation.

Asked about suspended fishing talks between Taiwan and Japan, the diplomat said the two countries had decided to resume the talks in October, but were forced to reconsider after Japan's nationalization approach drew strong protests.

Currently, the two sides are discussing the issue, he said.

A sovereignty dispute between Germany, Denmark and the Netherlands over North Sea oil fields in the 1960s was taken to the ICJ. The case was finally settled by the court in 1969 under the North Sea Continental Shelf case.

(By Emmanuelle Tzeng and Elizabeth Hsu)

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