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From Beijng to Tokyo, from Seoul to New Delhi, LinkAsia takes viewers into media about Asia – from Asia – offering unfiltered insight into one of the most diverse, fast-paced regions of the globe.

 

The LinkAsia blog features in-depth analysis from expert contributors and LinkAsia producers, as well as transcripts from NHK Japan reports.

 

LinkAsia airs Fridays at 9:30pm ET/6:30pm PT on Link TV, and is available online at LinkAsia.org.

LinkAsia News Brief

China-Japan Tension Masks Underlying Deep Ties
(LinkAsia: September 28, 2012)
Yul Kwon:
You would think that when the Chinese uses phrases like the "anti-fascist war" and accuse a "defeated country" of not recognizing the territorial rights of "a victorious nation", this would pretty much signal that relations between China and Japan are going into a deep freeze. But NHK talked to one Japanese expert who doesn't think that's the case.

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NHK World NEWSLINE
Airdate: September 27, 2012

Akio Takahara:
Japan and China have never been closer before. We have thousands of years of a relationship, but now is the best in a way in the sense that economic exchange, cultural exchange, people to people exchange- the level of these things is higher than ever. So, we have to - don't just focus on the negative aspects of things, we have this great resilience in the relationship.

Reporter:
He said internal changes in China have helped inflame tensions.

Akio Takahara:
China is rising. And there's been an increase in the budgets of these law enforcement agencies, particularly in the sea. The people in China would expect them to be more assertive, particularly regarding issues of sovereignty.

Reporter:
Takahara says people on both sides have to understand the complexity of their ties.

Akio Takahara:
Everyone should pay more attention to this situation, and try to strengthen the resilience in the relationship. And try the weaken the fragility in the relationship. I think the forty year protest has taught us this.
 
 

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Taiwan Gets Involved in Diaoyu/Senkaku Beef
(LinkAsia: September 28, 2012)
Yul Kwon:
Police in a number of Chinese cities have put out photos of people wanted for vandalizing Japanese property during demonstrations earlier this month. Five people have already surrendered themselves. On Sina Weibo, China's equivalent of Twitter, most posts condemned those people who smashed Japanese property. Complicating matters even further, the islands at the center of the dispute are also claimed by Taiwan. This week, Taiwanese fishing boats headed to the area. And, in response, Japanese authorities intercepted them. Japan's public broadcaster NHK tells us what happened.

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NHK World NEWSLINE
Airdate: September 25, 2012

Reporter:
Japan's coast guard officers say around 40 fishing boats and 12 patrol ships entered Japanese waters on Tuesday. They say some of the fishing boats came within 6 km of one of the islands. The Taiwanese crews are part of a fishing cooperative. They are protesting against Japan's normalization of the territory. They say they have fishing rights in the area. Coast guard officers use water cannons to try to stop the boat from heading toward the islands. Taiwanese patrol ships sprayed back. Coast guard crews used microphones and electronic signs to warn the boats to leave. They say all of the Taiwanese vessels left Japanese waters by noon. Japanese government officials launched a protest to Taiwan over the use of water cannons against coast guard ships. They say such conduct in territorial waters violates international law.

Yul Kwon:
Taiwan's president, Ma Ying-jeou, called for a peaceful resolution and said that his country would propose joint development of the area, which potentially has large natural gas reserves.
 
 

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World Heritage Site Ayutthaya Braces for Floods
(LinkAsia: September 28, 2012)
Yul Kwon:
Over in Southeast Asia, Thais are looking nervously at the skies. The annual rainy season is causing a steep rise in many of Thailand's rivers. Last year brought disastrous floods in much of the country, including the capital city of Bangkok, leading to more than 880 deaths, misery for millions of people, and billions of dollars in lost production.
One of the areas hit hardest by the floods was the world heritage site of Ayutthaya. NHK has this report on the city's flood defenses.

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NHK World NEWSLINE
Airdate: September 21, 2012

Reporter:
The ancient city of Ayutthaya is famous for its world heritage temples. Last year, the city was inundated by Thailand's worst floods in half a century. As the rains approach again, citizens are on high alert. Situated on the bank of Chao Phraya river, these historical temples are at risk of flooding.
 
 

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Dokdo/Takeshima: The History of a Dispute

 
 

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Japan's Senkaku Nationalization Plan Backfiring
(LinkAsia: September 21, 2012)
Yul Kwon:
The Japanese government's effort to nationalize the Senkakus seems to be backfiring. NHK anchor Gene Otani talked to a former diplomat and scholar who explained that Japan had made a mistake by pushing ahead with an idea that had little chance of working.

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NHK World NEWSLINE
Airdate: September 18, 2012

Anchor:
Chinese people are angry that the Japanese government nationalized the islands, did the Japanese leaders expect this kind of reaction?

Kuni Miyake:
Well, I did and I hope they did. But unfortunately, the idea of the Japanese government is this: they thought that the nationalization would help because the owner, landowner would get the money, and the government of Tokyo would sell the nationalization idea to the Japanese government. So that Japanese government thought that they could sell this deal to the Chinese side. Unfortunately, the Chinese didn't buy it. The reason, one of the biggest reasons is that they are in the middle of the politically sensitive season.

Reporter:
Now the Chinese government officials say that Japanese representatives agreed to avoid any territorial action on the Senkakus, they say the Japanese broke the promise. What's your take on this?

Kuni Miyake:
Well, they say this is shelving the issue of  Senkaku. But there must have been some kind of unilateral practice by some of the Japanese politicians with respect to the island.
The Japanese government said there is no agreement like that in the past.

Anchor:
Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson has called on protesters to exercise restraint, but he stopped short of telling them to stop the demonstration. What do you think are the
intentions of the Chinese government?

Kuni Miyake:
Well, they have a big dilemma. They're facing a wrong deed by the Japanese government, so they have to do something. Otherwise, they could be criticized for being too weak against the Japanese government. So, they encourage, or sometimes even organize some of the demonstrations in those cities to show their anger of the Chinese people. But at the same time, if you fan it too much, then probably the anti-Japanese movement could turn into an anti-government movement in China. So that's exactly what they really want to avoid.

Reporter:
I guess the big picture is how does this all end and finish? What measures will leaders on both sides take to deal with the problem? What are the channels of negotiations between China and Japan going on right now.

Kuni Miyake:
If the idea of shelving the issue is gone, probably we have to work on the new set of rules to avoid unnecessary friction. In order to have a real understanding between the two
countries, we need to have a political dialogue and political channel to have frank, candid discussion.
 
 

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