SEOUL, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- South Korea on Friday slammed an event promoting Japan's claim to the Dokdo islands, with officials terming its arguments "unjustifiable and meaningless."
Tension over the contested islets was heightened when the Tokyo central government sent a senior Cabinet official to the annual "Dokdo Day" event, the Yonhap News Agency reported.
Japan's Shimane prefecture, which claims administrative control over the islands, has held the event every Feb. 22 since 2006 to emphasize its claims, but this was the first year a member of the central government attended.
In protest, South Korea "urged Japan to abolish ordinances about the designation of the Dokdo day and to immediately stop unjustifiable territorial claims to Dokdo," South Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman Cho Tai-young said in a statement.
The government vowed it would make "strong responses" to any provocative action by Japan.
The decision to send Aiko Shimajiri, a parliamentary secretary with the Cabinet Office, to the event was criticized as a "grave criminal act" by Kim Kwan-yong, governor of North Gyeongsang province, which administers the islands for South Korea. They are called the Takeshima islands in Japan.
A group of about 100 people demonstrated in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul and delivered a letter to the embassy asking Japan to be "a true neighbor instead of seeking an aggressive attitude."
|Additional World News Stories|
LONDON, May 25 (UPI) --Three more suspects were arrested Saturday evening in the hacking death of a British soldier in London.
JAKARTA, May 25 (UPI) --South Korean pop star Psy will perform in Indonesia at a concert celebrating diplomatic ties between the two countries, his management agency said Saturday.
WASHINGTON, May 26 (UPI) --In the U.S. non-federal sector, older workers are more likely than younger counterparts to report being able to put their best skills to use, a survey says.