Japan to ask China to pay for damaged patrol boats

A Chinese fishing boat had collided with Japan Coast Guard ships on Sept 07.

Tokyo: Japan said on Monday it would ask China to pay for damage made to Japan Coast Guard ships when a Chinese fishing boat collided with them near disputed islets, the latest sign of bickering between Asia`s two biggest economies.

Fishing trawler captain Zhan Qixiong was released and arrived back in China on Saturday after the collision on September 07 near the islets, known as the Diaoyu in China and Senkaku in Japan.

"Naturally, we will be asking for the boats to be returned to their original condition," Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshito Sengoku told a news conference.

"Regardless of us doing it now or later when things have cooled down, this will be the government`s task."

Sengoku also called for renewed talks with China on fishing around the islands and to prevent such an incident from recurring.

The row has bounced back and forth between the two sides with demands for an apology and rejections, illustrating the fragility of ties between two countries troubled by Chinese memories of wartime occupation, military mistrust and maritime territorial disputes.

The dispute also raised concerns about damage to Sino-Japanese trade ties at a time when Japan is becoming increasingly reliant on China`s dynamism for growth.

Bureau Report

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