Islands dispute triggers battling ads in US

Updated: 2012-09-02 07:59

By Chen Jia in San Francisco (China Daily)

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Islands dispute triggers battling ads in US

Eminent Chinese philanthropist Chen Guangbiao has publicly called for an amicable solution to "prevent Japan's claim on China's Diaoyu Islands" in a half-page advertisement in Friday's New York Times.

The advertisement appeared in the main section of the paper, on page 19, and included an overview on the islands.

"Japan's right wing is now violating China's Diaoyu Islands.

"The Diaoyu Islands have been part of China since antiquity. I call on the United States government and people everywhere to condemn Japan's provocative behavior," the advertisement said in both English and Chinese.

It said Japan's right wing is now violating China's territorial sovereignty, and threatening stability and security in the Asia-Pacific region.

The Diaoyu Islands dispute and Japan's so-called move to nationalize the islands were incited by Japan's right wing, it said, and the islands must be protected.

Marked by Chen's personal style, the advertisement has a photo of the philanthropist posing as a skater on a bicycle.

"How would Americans feel, and what would America do, if Japan announced that Hawaii was its territory?" the advertisement asked.

Chen's advertising campaign in the renowned American newspaper was in response to an advertisement in The Wall Street Journal on July 27 bought by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government.

Islands dispute triggers battling ads in US

The WSJ advertisement took up two-thirds of a page, seeking US support for its so-called purchase plan of the Diaoyu Islands. It claimed a developing China was putting pressure on the surrounding waters.

It even warned "failure to support the Asian nations confronting China would result in the United States losing the entire Pacific Ocean".

Observers say the provocation suggests Japan is anxious to get the US involved in the dispute, since Shintaro Ishihara, the Tokyo governor, announced a plan to buy the islands in April.

Satoshi Morimoto, Japan's defense minister, earlier raised the possibility of mobilizing the country's Self-Defense Force while commenting on Chinese vessels sailing near the islands in the East China Sea.

During a Wednesday news briefing, US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland was asked if the US supports Japan's rival territorial claim over China's Diaoyu Islands. Nuland reiterated that the US does not have a position on the sovereignty of the islands, but that the US sees the islands "falling under the scope" of Article 5 of the 1960 US-Japan Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security, a defense pact that commits Washington support to help Tokyo protect its "territory".

China and its armed forces have the "confidence, capability" and unwavering determination to defend the Diaoyu Islands, the Defense Ministry said on Thursday.

Defense Ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng said at a monthly news conference that the Chinese military is closely watching Japan's moves. "We are against any words or deeds that would escalate or complicate the situation," he said.

Geng also confirmed that US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta will visit China in mid-September, but did not provide an exact date.

According to a report of on Aug 29, some American-Chinese are planning a protest against Japan's decision to "nationalize" the Diaoyu Islands in front of the Japanese consulate in New York on September 16.

More than 1,000 overseas Chinese, aged from 7 to 84, were involved in an earlier protest in New York and another demonstration initiated by overseas Chinese took place in front of the Japanese consulate in Los Angeles on July 12.