China sets air defense zone over East China Sea

AP News
Posted: Nov 23, 2013 12:17 AM

BEIJING (AP) — The Chinese Defense Ministry on Saturday issued a map of an East China Sea Air Defense Identification Zone including a chain of disputed islands also claimed by Japan.

Beijing also issued a set of rules for the zone, saying all aircraft must notify Chinese authorities and are subject to emergency military measures if they do not identify themselves or obey orders from Beijing.

The ministry did not elaborate on the punitive measures but said the rules went into effect Saturday.

Both Beijing and Tokyo claim the islets, known as the Senkakus in Japan and the Diaoyu in Chinese. Protests erupted throughout China last year to denounce the Japanese government's purchase of the islands from private ownership.

A rising economic and military power, China has become more assertive over its maritime claims. It has been in rows with several neighboring countries over islands in the East and the South China seas.

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South Korea and Taiwan also claim the barren, uninhabited islands in the East China Sea.

Japan recently said it was planning to set up a new website to promote its claim over the islands, the Kyodo News reported.