- Press Briefings
Spokesperson's Press Briefing (Sept. 25, 2012)
Has there been no talk that it could materialize?
A: Are you asking whether a meeting between the ROK and Japanese Foreign Ministers has been arranged on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session?
A: No decision has been made yet.
Q: By when do you expect China to respond to us with regard to its plan related to Ieodo? Were you unaware of relevant moves before the release of the press report?
A: We learned about it from a press report on China’s announcement.
We are working to accurately verify relevant facts in this regard.
As I have just told you, we will make our utmost efforts for the Ieodo Ocean Research Station to continue its operation without disruption.
Nevertheless, navigation and flight around the area is permitted by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
Should our exercise of jurisdiction over our EEZ be undermined in any way, though, we will respond firmly to the situation.
Q: You said that flights over other countries’ EEZs are allowed. Does that mean then that it is OK for China’s unmanned surveillance aircraft to fly over Ieodo?
A: We will first verify relevant facts, including the purpose of the flights. I think the foremost important thing is getting an accurate picture of the situation.
Q: When did the latest high-level meeting take place to discuss the demarcation of the EEZ around Ieodo? Should China’s plan be intended to lay a jurisdictional claim to the island, how will the ROK government respond?
A: I don’t remember exactly when the latest relevant meeting took place. In their meeting held on the sidelines of the ongoing UN General Assembly session, the ROK and Chinese Foreign Ministers agreed to expedite negotiations on delimiting the EEZ boundary.
However, as you must be aware, although the two countries have held numerous rounds of negotiations, a gap in their principles of demarcation has hindered them from reaching an agreement.
This being an important issue, though, the ROK government will work to delimit the boundary at an early date.
Q: Please tell us how the ROK government will respond in case China lays a jurisdictional claim to Ieodo. Could you also specify the number of occasions that China has made such claims?
A: I cannot specify the exact number. Let me tell you, though, that if the EEZ boundary between the ROK and China is demarcated in accordance with the median-line principle, Ieodo definitely belongs to the ROK maritime territory.
While China takes a different stance, we will make every effort to make sure that we maintain our jurisdiction over the island based on the aforementioned position.
I will conclude today’s briefing. Thank you.