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Kallie Szczepanski

Senkaku Island Dispute Flares Up Again

By August 22, 2012

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Japanese Anti-China Protest in Roppongi over Senkaku Daioyu Islands, 2010

Just a week after Japan's dispute with South Korea over the Dokdo/Takeshima Island chain, Japan is exchanging words with China over the disputed Senkaku (Japanese name) or Daioyu (Chinese) Islands. Activists from each nation swam out to the islands to emphasize their countries' claims.

In reaction, thousands of citizens in China poured into the streets of Beijing, smashing up Japanese-made cars. Tokyo called on the Chinese government to protect Japanese citizens in China from the angry mobs.

The island chain is uninhabited, but comes with valuable natural gas deposits and fishing grounds. However, its worth is extremely small relative to the volume of trade between Japan and China, so logic would suggest that the two countries will bow to self-interest and attempt to dial back their citizens' nationalistic rhetoric.

Photo of a Japanese protest against China over the same islands in 2010.

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