TOKYO: China’s “coercive” behavior in waters around islands at the center of a bitter dispute with Japan is dangerous and could trigger an incident, Tokyo said in a new defense paper on Tuesday.
At a cabinet meeting, hawkish Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his ministers adopted the defense white paper, the first annual report on Japan’s defense capabilities and regional security since the islands dispute flared anew last year.
Tokyo took three of the five Senkaku islands out of private ownership in September. Beijing lays claim to the islands, and calls them the Diaoyus.
“China . . . has taken action described as coercive, which includes risky behavior,” the 450-page report said.
“China’s activities include its intrusion into Japan’s territorial waters, its violation of Japan’s territorial airspace and even dangerous actions that could cause a contingency,” it said.
In particular, the paper said a Chinese frigate locked weapons-targeting radar on a Japanese destroyer in January—a claim Beijing has denied.