NHK reported that according to the 11th Regional Coast Guard Headquarters, four Chinese government vessels entered Japanese territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands from Monday to Tuesday morning, saying that while two of them apparently left the territorial waters at about 10 a.m. today, the remaining two are apparently making moves to approach a Japanese fishing boat. The network also said one of the two vessels that left the territorial waters was armed with a cannon-like weapon, saying that this is the first intrusion into Japan’s territorial waters by a Chinese vessel carrying a large weapon since the new law was enacted in China to authorize the use of weapons against foreign vessels.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato told the press this morning: “The two China Coast Guard vessels that entered Japan’s territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands in Okinawa yesterday still remain there. In addition, two additional vessels belonging to the Chinese coast guard also entered the territorial waters at around 4:15 a.m. today and made moves to approach a Japanese fishing boat… We are aware that one of the two vessels that entered the territorial waters this morning was carrying a cannon-like object.” Kato reportedly added that the recent intrusions of Chinese vessels into Japanese territorial waters cannot be tolerated and that Tokyo lodged a strong protest against the Chinese side through its diplomatic channel. Defense Minister Kishi also reportedly said: “China Coast Guard vessels chased a Japanese fishing boat and entered Japan’s territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands. The Japan Coast Guard is responding, but the Ministry of Defense and the SDF will also strengthen their surveillance…. We will send a strong message that the new coast guard law is problematic in terms of consistency with international law and is totally unacceptable.”