- Ye Old Chosun, quoting Japan’s Sankei Shimbun, is reporting that Korea is refusing to allow a Japan MSDF warship to touch at Busan during upcoming PSI drills hosted by Korea.
The Korean side cites “various circumstances” for the refusal.
When the Japanese side suggested it might be unable to take part in the drill, the United States changed the drill scenario so that the Japanese ship wouldn’t have to touch at Busan.
The drills, featuring warships and planes from the United States, Australia, Korea and Japan, will take place in international waters about 100km off Busan.
The Japanese side also feels the Koreans are objecting to the ships flying the Japanese naval ensign, which is the “Rising Sun” flag.
The Korean Defense Ministry, for its part, hasn’t mentioned anything about denying the Japanese ship entry into Busan.
- YTN is reporting that during talks in New York, the foreign ministers of Korea and China agreed to cooperate in challenging Japan’s historical views.
With Japanese Prime Minister Noda planning to talk about the need to resolve territorial issues through international law in his address to the UN General Assembly, Korea and China agreed the international community should first understand history properly. Or as Korean Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan put it, “It’s an issue related to our history. And this is why Seoul and Beijing have agreed on the need to tell the world the truth about history.” Which sounds to me a lot like Korea taking China’s side in the Senkaku dispute. Which is odd, considering.
- Korea and China, however, have their own issues. Ye Olde Chosun is reporting that China is placing Ieodo under regular aerial surveillance:
China is claiming once again that the submerged rocks of Ieo Island are part of its own territory and included them among places to be monitored by aerial drones. The move came six months after Liu Xigui, the director of China’s State Oceanic Administration, said Beijing would now regularly patrol Chinese waters using both ships and surveillance aircraft.
The Korean side, for its part, plans to respond to Chinese survey ships with Korean Coast Guard cutters, and Chinese warships with ROK Navy warships. Yesterday, the Korea Coast Guard commissioned a 3,000-ton Coast Guard cutter that will be deployed to Jeju-do to patrol the waters around Ieodo.
PS: The Chosun Ilbo is still unhappy with the missile situation. Despite a bilateral agreement with the United States that would allow Korea to expand its missile ranges to 800km, the Chosun wants to know why it’s only South Korea being tied down with these agreements while China, Russia, North Korea and Japan can seemingly build whatever the hell they like. Ye Olde Chosun warns that keeping Korea from obtaining a minimum capacity to defend itself not only threatens the balance in Northeast Asia, but also doesn’t help in maintaining or developing the Korea—US alliance.
No argument from me.