Japan protests China war jets in ‘close call’

June 12, 2014 - 12:00:00 am

TOKYO:  Japan protested after Chinese fighter jets flew “abnormally close” to Japanese military aircraft over the East China Sea yesterday, Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said.

The newest flare up in a long-running territorial dispute between Asia’s largest economies follows a similar incident on May 24, when Japan said Chinese aircraft had come within a few dozen metres of its warplanes. 

The Chinese Su-27s “flew so recklessly that the Self-Defence Forces pilot felt in danger,” Onodera told visiting Australian Defence Minister David Johnston. 

“I would like the Chinese military authorities who allow this kind of dangerous behaviour to take place to behave morally.”

China lays claim to Japanese-administered islets in the East China Sea, known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China. It is also pressing its claim to almost all the South China Sea, brushing aside claims by several southeast Asian states.              Reuters