China confirms ships patrolling Diaoyu Islands

Updated: 2012-10-25 13:18


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BEIJING - A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman confirmed on Thursday that Chinese maritime surveillance ships had entered the 12-nautical-mile zone around the Diaoyu Islands.

Hong Lei made the remarks in response to a question after media reports had said a fleet of China's maritime surveillance vessels entered the zone on Thursday.

"The Chinese maritime surveillance vessels conducted routine patrols in the territorial waters around China's Diaoyu Islands to safeguard the country's sovereignty on October 25," Hong said, adding that it was a normal activity for the Chinese surveillance ships to exercise jurisdiction over the waters.

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