On September 7, 2010, a Chinese fishing trawler, Minjinyu, collided with a Japanese
Coast Guard patrol boat, Yonakuni, near Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands. Japanese officers
then boarded Minjinyu to arrest the captain, charging him with obstruction of law
enforcementunder the Japanese domestic law.
This enraged the Peoples Republic of
China(PRC); Premier Wen Jiabao demanded the immediate and unconditional release
of the captain. On September 24 of that year, Japanese prosecutors decided to let the
captain leave, after 17 days of detention. The official reason for his release was that the
damage to the Japanese Coast Guard vessels was slight and no one was injured.
this incident, waters surrounding the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands have been repeatedly
visited by the PRC patrol boats belonging to Regional Bureau of the East China Sea
Fishery Management under the Ministry of Agriculture.
As of March 10, 2011, eight
visits by such patrol boats have been sighted by Japan. Among the vessels are Yu-Zheng
(Fishery Administration) No. 201 and Yu-Zheng No. 202.
It is important to note that,
though being warned by Japanese aircrafts, all these visits have not been physically
The collision incident and its aftermath indicate the different positions between the
PRC and Japan on the maritime boundary delimitation and the legal status of the
Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands. The complex situation cannot be correctly understood,
analyzed, characterized, and predicted without first looking at relevant rules of
international law and at behavior patterns of the two States when dealing with similar
problems of maritime delimitation involving islands with disputed legal status.
As another stakeholder, the Republic of China Government on Taiwan (ROC) is
marginalized (if not ignored) in regional and international affairs.
Given the special
are those of the author alone, not representing any government agencies. The author can be reached at
firstname.lastname@example.org /Address: No. 2 Pei-Ning Road, Keelung 20224 Taiwan, ROC.
Japans action off Diaoyu raises concern
(Sept. 10, 2011)
http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/cndy/2011-09/10/content_11282795.htm (last visited on Sept. 27, 2011).
Matter of Fact: Japan-China Relations Strained over Senkaku Islands
, NHK W
(Sept. 10, 2011),
http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/tv/japan7/archives100925.html ( last visited on Sep. 27, 2011).
List of the PRC Fishery Management Patrol Boats ,
5741/5708.html (last visited on Oct. 6, 2011).
Patrol Boat from Mainland China Found in Waters of Diaoyu (available only in Chinese), C
PRC Patrol Boat Enters Waters of Diaoyu
http://www.haixiainfo.com.tw/139064.html (all last visited on
July 34, 2011).
5Today, 23 States recognize the ROC government.
the list of States recognizing the ROC,
http://www.mofa.gov.tw/webapp/ct.asp?xItem=11624&CtNode=1426&mp=1 (last visited on Oct. 10, 2011).