Japan mulls nationalising unclaimed islands: report
Japan may nationalise any unclaimed remote islands in its waters in a bid to bolster its territorial claims, a newspaper said today amid a dispute with China over one set. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government is to establish a task force to research owners and names of some 400 remote islands, the Yomiuri Shimbun said.
If their ownership is unclear, the government will give official names to the islands and nationalise them, the mass-circulation daily reported. ‘(Japan) plans to end the research next year and quickly take action, including nationalisation, to remote islands with no ownership,’ the daily said.
The 400 islands are scattered across waters surrounding the Japanese archipelago. The task force will comprise officials from the finance and justice ministries as well as the coastguard. The move is part of Japan’s efforts to preserve maritime resources as the country faces territorial disputes.