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Saturday, November 06, 2004

 

China v Japan poses ‘real threat’ to Asian security

A former editor of the Far Eastern Economic Review, Michael Vatikiotis, writes that the real threat to security in Asia is the “brewing cold war between Japan and China” which he does not believe will be restrained by the “growing economic symbiosis between Asia's largest economy and its largest market”.

“Energy could well provide the spark for a future conflict between China and Japan. The flashpoint is a small chain of islands off the coast of Japan, which China also claims. The Senaku islands, known as the Diaoyu in China, are thought to straddle potential fields of oil and gas. Tokyo recently angered Beijing again, by renting several privately owned islands in the chain to reinforce its claim,” Vatikiotis stated in today’s Jakarta Post.

“At a recent security conference, one Chinese academic went so far as to imagine a military clash if a Chinese oil company began prospecting for oil and gas in the area and Japan mounted a challenge.”

Quite clear.

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