Taiwan leader Ma Ying-jeou reiterated Taiwan’s refusal to compromise on the Diaoyutai Archipelago sovereignty issue, while pushing for peaceful cooperative development of the East China Sea, the Presidential Office said.
Ma made the remarks in an interview with Takehiko Kiyohara, chairman of Japanese newspaper Sankei Shimbun, and other members of the Japanese media Feb. 23. At the same time, Ma stressed the depth of friendship and close ties between the ROC and Japan, especially in the light of recent experience, such as the March 11, 2011 tsunami and earthquake.
The Daioyutais had recently become the focus of disputes, leading to a rise in tensions in the region, Ma said.
While the government is firm in its position that the islands are ROC sovereign territory, it has at the same time put forward the East China Sea peace initiative, urging all sides to show self-restraint, reduce tensions, put aside differences and resolve the disputes through peaceful means, to the benefit of people living in the region, he said.
The Taiwan-Japan fisheries agreement shall follow the principle of “no concessions on sovereignty, but joint development of resources,” Ma said, adding that he hoped the agreement could be finalized as quickly as possible.