About the Senkaku Island

About the Senkaku Island

The Senkaku Islands is the general term for the islands located at the western end of the Nansei Islands. They consist of Uotsuri Island, Kita-kojima Island, Minami-kojima Island, Kuba Island, Taisho Island, Okino Kita-iwa, Okino Minami-iwa, Tobise, and other islands. The distance from Okinawa Island to Uotsuri Island, which is the largest of the Senkaku Islands, is 410 kilometers.

In the past, there was a dried bonito factory and Japanese people lived on the islands, but currently they are uninhabited. They are governmentally controlled as a part of Ishigaki City, Okinawa Prefecture.

Name of islands, Area
○ 魚釣島 (Uotsuri Shima) 3.6km²
○ 北小島 (Kita Kojima) 0.26km²
○ 南小島 (Minami Kojima) 0.32km²
○ 久場島 (Kuba Shima) 0.87km²
○ 大正島 (Taisho To) 0.04km²
Locations of the Senkaku Islands (Uotsuri Island, Kita-kojima Island, Minami-kojima Island, Kuba Island, and Taisho Island)
From 1885 through 1895 the government of Japan conducted investigations on the sovereignty situation of the Senkaku Islands. After it was carefully confirmed that they did not belong to any country such as the neighboring Qing dynasty, a Cabinet decision was made and they were incorporated into Japan's territory.

Japanese people subsequently settled on the islands and conducted activities such as Albatross feather collecting and dried bonito manufacturing. It is thought that during the height of their prosperity 248 Japanese people lived on the islands.

After World War II, the islands were placed under the administration of the United States based on the Treaty of Peace with Japan. In 1972 they were returned to Japan, and they remain in that situation today.

Timeline related to the Senkaku Islands

Timeline

Efforts by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government

In April 2012, former Tokyo governor Ishihara announced that the Tokyo Metropolitan Government would purchase and utilize the Senkaku Islands, and donations of approximately JPY 1.4billion were collected from residents of Tokyo and other places throughout Japan who supported that plan (see the current state of donations for the Senkaku Islands).

On September 2, 2012, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government conducted a field investigation of the Senkaku Islands from the sea. The purpose was to conduct a basic investigation in order to confirm the islands for real estate evaluation and consideration of measures for utilization. The necessity of establishing facilities for local fishermen and protection of the natural environment was confirmed.

 On September 11, 2012 the Senkaku Islands came to be owned by the national government. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government established a fund in order to prompt the national government, which has become the owner of the Senkaku Islands, to utilize the islands, and to strictly manage donations beyond the accounting year.

From now on, in order to entrust the fund to the national government, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government will collaborate with Ishigaki City and other nearby local governments, make proposals, etc. to the national government, and watch the actions of the national government, and respond so that the intentions of the people of Tokyo and the rest of Japan will be fully utilized.
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