Washington, Sep. 27: Japanese and Chinese foreign ministers held talks on the disputed islands on the sidelines of the 67th U.N. General Assembly in New York.
Japanese Minister Koichiro Gemba described the atmosphere as severe, while his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi restated Beijing’s sovereignty over the islands.
Yang ‘reiterated China’s solemn position’ on the islands, calling Japan’s purchase ‘a gross violation of China’s territorial integrity and sovereignty’.
Gemba, however, urged China to exercise restraint and described the mood as ‘severe’.
The islands, called Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China, are controlled by Japan, but claimed by China and Taiwan.
According to the BBC, tension in the region has been high since Japan’s purchase of the islands from their private Japanese owner.
The row over ownership of the islands has been rumbling for years and has flared sporadically, the report added.
This time, it has led to anti-Japanese protests in several Chinese cities and a warning from China that economic ties could be affected. (ANI)