Japanese activists who landed on the disputed rocky island of Senkaku in the East China sea have been defending their actions.
The territory is known as Diaoyu in China.
The 10 protesters swam ashore and waved Japanese flags before swimming back to their boat.
“Just being close to Senkaku and not doing anything..that’s unbelievable”, said Tokyo Arakawa, a district politician who was one of those who landed on the islands. “As a Japanese citizen and as a local lawmaker I went onto the island to show clearly that this is Japan”.
Beijing has formally complained to Japan and protests were sparked across China despite the fact that Chinese activists carried out a similar action last week.
The two countries have been feuding over the uninhabited islands for decades.
“As an ordinary citizen I’m not quite clear what the position of my country is on this”, said one man, “but persnally I say that we overthrow the small country of Japan. for China to rise to prominence first of all we need all 1.3 billion Chinese people to unite”.
In the southern Chinese city of Shenzen anger boiled over to the point where prostesters attacked Japanese made cars including police vehicles.
Relations between the two countries have been plagued by China’s bitter memories of Japan’s military occupation, while Tokyo worries about Beijing’s rising world influence.