Taipei, Sept. 30 (CNA) The Republic of China claims full sovereignty over the Tiaoyutai Islands but has no intention of inciting controversy over the disputed islets amid rising tension between China and Japan over the issue, a Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) official said Thursday.
The latest incident in the longstanding dispute over the islands, which lie about 100 nautical miles off Taiwan's northeastern tip in the East China Sea, was set off by the arrest of a Chinese fishing boat skipper after his trawler and two Japanese Coast Guard vessels collided Sept. 7. The incident led to a diplomatic row between China and Japan, with the United States also involved.
"Taiwan's position is clear, in that we claim full sovereignty over the Tiaoyutais... as the Constitution and the territory of the Republic of China remain unchanged, " said MAC Vice Chairman Liu Te-shun in a press conference.
Liu said President Ma Ying-jeou has stated that Taiwan will not "incite unnecessary controversy" with Japan and China, both of which also claim sovereignty over the Tiaoyutais, known as the Diaoyutai Islands in China and the Senkaku Islands in Japan.
"We do not seek cooperation with other countries on the issue, nor do we define the issue as a dispute, " Liu said.
Liu did not respond to a reporter's question on whether Taiwan has been "omitted and marginalized" in the international dispute. (By Chris Wang) ENDITEM/J