Japanese historian says Japan is manipulating documents on disputed islands with China

Historians in the News
tags: China, Japan, Senkaku Islands, islands dispute

Japan has recently intensified its propaganda to claim several uninhabited islands disputed with its neighbor in the East China Sea, but a Japanese historian refuted the claim and questioned Tokyo's reliability since it has manipulated evidence to mislead the rest of the world on the territorial issue.

Tadayoshi Murata, an honorary professor at Japan's Yokohama National University, by citing Japanese official documents detailed in his new book "Historical Documents Testify the ' Sovereignty of Senkaku'," describes how the Japanese government illegally occupied the Chinese Diaoyu Islands step by step in the 1890s.

"Actually, the Japanese government had been aware of the relations between the Qing dynasty and the islands in 1885, and, therefore, it suspended plans to erect a national border marker for this very reason as senior officials were concerned that if they continued to do so, it would possibly trigger diplomatic conflict with the Qing dynasty," Murata told Xinhua in a recent exclusive interview.

According to the professor's book, Japanese official documents showed that then Okinawa Governor Sutezou Nishimura was reluctant to follow then Home Minister Aritomo Yamagata's order to erect territorial markers on the uninhabited islands as the governor recognized the connections the islands had with China after his research.

Nishimura reported his research to Yamagata. The then home minister, who insisted the islands had no connection with the Qing dynasty but also worried about causing possible diplomatic problems, handed Nishimura's report and his own viewpoint to then Foreign Minister Kaoru Inoue on Oct. 9, 1885, to let the top diplomat make a decision.

Inoue made his decision in his reply to Yamagata on Oct. 21, 1885 that "there are rumors recently circulated by Qing newspapers and others, including one that says our government is going to occupy the islands in the vicinity of Taiwan that belongs to the Qing Dynasty, which are arousing their suspicions towards our country and frequently alerting the Qing government's caution." ...

Read entire article at Xinhua

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