Former Senkaku owner wants ICJ to determine sovereignty
As tensions escalate between China, Taiwan and Japan over ownership and sovereignty of the uninhabited Senkaku islets in the far southern region of Okinawa Prefecture, the former owner now things the matter should be resolved by the International Court of Justice.
Kunioki Kurihara sold the disputed islands to the central Japanese government for ¥2.05 billion, but didn’t anticipate the anger the sale would bring from neighboring nations who’ve also claimed ownership of the tiny islets. Chinese have reacted vehemently, staging anti-Japanese demonstrations, looting Japanese stores and factories in China, and spoken out against Japan’s move on the islands, which China calls Diaoyu and claims as theirs.
Kurihara’s brother, who’s the family spokesman, says he hopes Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda will turn to the ICJ to obtain an international judgment on the islands’ sovereignty, just as he did with disputed islands in between Japan and South Korea. Hiroyuki Kurihara says “China is very outspoken about its position over the Senkaku Islands, but Japan has its own position as well, and it needs to get that message out to the global community. I think the best way is to turn to the ICJ.” He says once both sides begin outlining positions and evidence of sovereignty, there is no end to it, and “an objective decision should be made under international law, and not by the people of both countries.”