China on Monday urged Japan not to take "dangerous actions that may complicate" the situation surrounding the Beijing-claimed, Tokyo-controlled islands in the East China Sea, reiterating they are the country's "inherent territory."
Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin also told reporters, "China's determination and will to safeguard its territorial sovereignty is unwavering," adding the nation will continue to patrol near the islets, called Diaoyu in the country and Senkaku in Japan.
His remarks came days after Japanese government officials said that under the interpretation of existing laws, the nation's coast guard could fire on foreign official vessels to quell resistance from them if they forcibly land on the islands.
As China also implemented a new law last month that allows its coast guard to use weapons against foreign ships that Beijing sees as illegally entering its waters, fears are growing that bilateral tensions over the uninhabited islets may escalate further.
On Thursday, Japanese officials told ruling Liberal Democratic Party lawmakers that it is possible for the country's coast guard to fire on foreign official vessels under laws by regarding their forcible landing on the islands as violent crimes.