Japan lodges protest after offshore Chinese construction spotted in East China Sea

Courtesy of the Defense Ministry
Structural foundations are seen west of the Japan-China median line in the East China Sea.

China is conducting offshore construction work in the East China Sea, west of the Japan-China median line, prompting Japan to lodge a strong protest with Beijing through diplomatic channels.

A photo released by the Defense Ministry showed a structure that could be linked to the development of a natural gas well.

“It is extremely regrettable that China is unilaterally proceeding with the development,” a government official said Friday.

According to the Japanese government, China already has 16 offshore facilities near the Japan-China median line. It is the first time since 2015 that a new offshore facility has been confirmed.

Takehiro Funakoshi, director general of the Foreign Ministry’s Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, has lodged a formal protest with a high official of the Chinese Embassy in Japan.

The Yomiuri Shimbun