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Chinese Media, “Dokdo is Korean Territory”

Posted March. 28, 2005 23:04,   


“Korea has recorded Dokdo as its territory since 512 A.D. while Japan started regarding Dokdo as its possession only recently in 1905.”

China’s state-operated Xinhua News Agency reported this on March 27 on the issue of Dokdo. Xinhua News Agency printed a article titled, “To Whom Does Dokdo Belong?,” on its daily printed for Shanghai, and explained the motivation behind Japan’s assertion as being the advantageous location of Dokdo, an islet of approximately 230,000 m², that is rich in marine resources and has gas and oil reserves at the bottom of the sea.

The news agency also reported on the details of Dokdo’s history of annexation; how General Lee Sa-bu of Shilla subjugated Dokdo as he took over the Kingdom of Usan under King Jijeung’s rule, and how Dokdo was called Unsando during the rule of Joseon’s King Sungjong between 1471 and 1481 and put under the jurisdiction of Ulleungdo.

The news agency particularly emphasized how Japan admitted on a written document made in 1667 that Dokdo was Joseon’s territory, and in 1895, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs clearly indicated on the “Written Report on Internal Deliberation of Joseon’s Diplomatic Relations” that Dokdo beloned to Joseon.

On the other hand, the first time Japan acknowledged the existence of Dokdo was in 1518, when a fisherman drifted unto the island and called the land Takeshima, using it as a temporary stop.

The article explains that Japan unilaterally started to treat Dokdo as its territory naming it Takeshima in 1905 after demanding for sometime that Joseon open up Ulleungdo and Dokdo after the Meiji Revolution.

Yoo-Seong Hwang yshwang@donga.com