NHK reported this afternoon that Foreign Minister Kishida said at a press conference today that the GOJ has “relayed its concern” over the entry of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) spy ship into the Japanese territorial waters on June 15 and said that Tokyo will continue to remain calm to avoid escalating the situation and take all-out measures to protect Japan’s territorial land, waters, and airspace.
Defense Minister Nakatani reportedly commented on China’s claim that the waters the PLAN vessel entered were international straits and therefore the passage was permitted under international law, saying that the area is not considered international straits and that China’s claim is unacceptable. He also reportedly said the Japanese side has conveyed its position through a diplomatic channel. The defense chief was also quoted as saying: “As we are still analyzing the situation, we cannot say at this point that it was ‘innocent passage.’ The ship transited our territorial waters without any notice or communication…. When a military vessel enters territorial waters, prior notification should be given.”