Japan, Taiwan activist visits fuel isle dispute

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Associated Press

Posted on July 6, 2012 at 2:02 AM

Updated Friday, Jul 6 at 3:32 AM

TOKYO (AP) — Activists from Taiwan and a local Japanese politician have made unauthorized visits to islands at the center of a heated territorial dispute.

Japan's coast guard says it spotted and warned a Taiwanese boat carrying activists near one of the islands on Wednesday. The following day, a Coast Guard vessel sighted two Japanese men swimming ashore on another of the islands. One of the men is an assembly member in Ishigaki, a nearby city in Japan's Okinawa prefecture.

The coast guard says the two remained on the island briefly before returning to Ishigaki on Friday.

The uninhabited islands called the Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in Chinese are claimed by Taiwan, China and Japan. Surrounded by rich fishing grounds, the islands are a frequent flash point in diplomatic relations.

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