Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe vowed on Friday that he would not "tolerate" any challenge to Japanese control over the contested Diaoyutai Islands, which are called the Senkakus in Japan and are also claimed by Taiwan, after China's growing incursions into the area.
"We simply cannot tolerate any challenge now and in the future. No nation should make any miscalculation or underestimate the firmness of our resolve," Abe said at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.
"No one should ever doubt the robustness of the Japan-US alliance," he added.
Speaking after talks at the White House with US President Barack Obama, Abe added that "I have absolutely no intention to climb up the escalation ladder."
He called for the two nations to work on common interests and called Japan's relations with China "among the most important" with any country.
"The doors are always open on my side for the Chinese leaders," Abe said.
The Japanese leader insisted that history and international law proved that the islands "are Japan's sovereign territory."
Abe said that no one contested Japan's sovereignty between 1895, when Tokyo annexed the islands, and 1971, the year before the US returned the islands along with Okinawa to Japan after seizing them in World War II.
The annual "kanji" Chinese character of the year in Japan went to "ring" on Thursday, after Tokyo's successful bid to host the 2020 Olympics, often referred to in local print media as "five rings." (Straits Times )
Tokyo police say they will restrict public access around the main intersection outside Shibuya Station between 10 p.m. Dec. 31 and 2 a.m. Jan. 1 to prevent a crush of New Year's revelers forming for the countdown, a recurrent problem in recent years. (Japan Times )
The opening of an additional railway link between JR Ueno and JR Tokyo stations in spring 2015 will drastically change services of the Tokaido, Tohoku and other lines and may cause confusion among passengers. (Yomiuri )
Two death-row inmates were hanged Thursday in the fourth round of executions since the launch last December of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government, Justice Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki said. (Japan Times )
On Saturday at around 11:30 a.m., officers arrested Hideaki Shoji, a resident of Yokohama, after he allegedly came up from behind a 21-year-old female college student and shot digital images up her skirt as she stood on a platform at Kuhonbutsu Station in Setagaya Ward. (Tokyo Reporter)
A 12-year battle for justice took an enormous financial, emotional and physical toll, says Catherine Jane Fisher. But for the Australian teacher of English and mother of three, it's time to savor a landmark court victory. (womensenews.org )
The number of shoplifting cases accounted for nearly 10 pct of all criminal offenses recognized by Japanese police, with the rate increasing, a National Police Agency survey showed Wednesday. (Jiji Press )