News / Asia

US, Japan Criticize China Air Defense Zone

FILE - Japanese Coast Guard vessels sail near a group of disputed islands called Diaoyu by China and Senkaku by Japan.
FILE - Japanese Coast Guard vessels sail near a group of disputed islands called Diaoyu by China and Senkaku by Japan.
VOA News
Japan's defense chief said Tokyo is working closely with Washington following China's establishment of an air defense zone over disputed waters in the East China Sea.

The U.S. and Japan have vowed not to recognize the air defense identification zone, under which Beijing wants all civilian and military aircraft to identify themselves and obey its orders.

Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera said Tuesday the Japanese Self Defense Forces are working with U.S. forces and will take all necessary steps to protect Japanese territory. "The defense ministry and self defense forces will look into the situation and do whatever it takes to protect our territory and airspace. As such, we will continue to look into what is needed to continue to monitor and patrol the area under self-defense and international law," Itsunori said.

China Disputed AirspaceChina Disputed Airspace
x
China Disputed Airspace
China Disputed Airspace
While U.S. and Japanese officials have condemned the Chinese move as provocative, they stressed it will have no effect on how they work in the area.

Pentagon spokesman U.S. Army Colonel Steve Warren said U.S. military planes flying in the region would not identify themselves according to the new Chinese rules.

But the new regulations are affecting Japanese commercial flights. Several Japanese airliners said they are now notifying China when their planes enter the new zone.

Although some see this as an acknowledgement of Beijing's control of the area, the RAND Corporation's Scott Harold told VOA it is not the primary intention of the new policy. "The real goal of the air defense identification zone is not to try to deal with civilian airlines, since at all times those are expected to be open to announcing themselves and their intentions. It's really about trying to exclude Japanese or U.S. or Korean or even Taiwanese military airplanes from flying in those areas without China's permission," he said.

Harold said the ultimate goal of the policy is to try to force the Japanese to the negotiating table by threatening to take action against any military plane that does not first seek Chinese permission.

The establishment of the new zone is the latest in a series of moves that have raised tension around the disputed East China Sea islands, known in Japan as Senkaku and in China as Diaoyu.

China has for months sent regular patrols of airplanes and ships near the islands, in what is seen as an attempt to challenge Japan's de facto control of them. The moves have raised concerns of an accidental clash.

Security analyst Yoichiro Sato of Japan's Ritsumeikan Asia-Pacific University told VOA the moves are making it necessary for Washington to go further than its current level of support for Japan regarding the islands. "This kind of strong move came in the wake of perceived weak U.S. commitment to the alliance and the defense of the Senkaku. This is a very dangerous move China is playing. And at this point, the U.S. has no choice but to upgrade its commitment. It has to. Otherwise, it will really cause a major problem later on for the United States," he noted.

The United States recognizes Japan's control of the East China Sea islands but says it takes no position on their "ultimate" sovereignty. It has, however, said the islands fall within the scope of the mutual defense treaty under which the United States is obligated to help Japan if attacked.

You May Like

Video On The Scene: In Gaza, Darkness Brings Dread and Death

Palestinians fear nighttime bombardment, VOA correspondent finds More

African Small Farmers Could Be Key to Ending Food Insecurity

Experts say providing access to microloans, crop insurance, better storage facilities, irrigation, road systems and market information could enable greater production More

University of Michigan Wins Solar Car Race

Squad guided its student-designed solar-powered vehicle to fifth consecutive time victory in eight-day bi-annual American Solar Challenge More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid