Noda Holding Conference to Express His Views on Takeshima, Senkaku Island Disputes

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda will hold a news conference on Friday to express his views on the territorial dispute over the Takeshima islets.

Noda wrote a letter to South Korean President Lee Myung-bak following Lee’s recent visit to the Takeshima islets in the Sea of Japan. They are called Dokdo in South Korea. The letter calls for a peaceful settlement of the territorial dispute in accordance with international law.

The South Korean government refused to accept the letter and returned it to Japan.
An official from the South Korean Embassy in Tokyo visited the Japanese Foreign Ministry on Thursday, but was denied entry. The South Korean government sent back the letter by mail later in the day.

The Japanese government says it cannot accept South Korea’s response to the territorial dispute.

In addition, Lee recently said that if Japan’s Emperor wishes to visit South Korea, he should offer a heartfelt apology to Koreans who died fighting for independence from Japan.

Noda told a Diet committee on Thursday that the comment lacks common sense.
Japanese authorities say they have not proposed to Korean officials that the Emperor visit the country. They plan to clarify South Korea’s stance through diplomatic channels.

At Friday’s news conference, Noda is also 1expected to speak about problems with China over the Senkaku island group in the East China Sea.

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