TOKYO (AP) — Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe renewed his claims on disputed East China Sea islands Wednesday as he visited nearby islands. He urged border security officials to boost their guard against China's increased activity in the region.
Abe told Coast Guard officials based on the Ishigaki island that Japan's border security environment is challenging because of China's increased provocation in the area. The Japanese-controlled islands called Senkaku are also claimed by China, which calls them Diaoyu.
Tougher territorial defense is part of Abe's ruling party's campaign platform for the upper house election Sunday. His governing coalition is likely to win a comfortable majority and strengthen its grip on power.
Abe's hawkish security policy and remarks including those defending Japan's wartime actions have caused diplomatic rows with China and South Korea.