• Defense & Security

4 Chinese Vessels Spotted Near Senkaku Islands, Totaling Record 352 Days Entering Contiguous Zone in 2023

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Foreground to background, Minami-Kojima, Kita-Kojima and Uotsuri islands of the Senkaku Islands are seen from a Yomiuri Shimbun plane on Sept. 6, 2013.

Four China Coast Guard (CCG) vessels were spotted sailing in the contiguous zone (approximately 22 km outside territorial waters) off the coast of Minami-Kojima Island and Taishojima Island in the Senkaku Islands, Okinawa Prefecture, on Sunday morning, according to the 11th Regional Coast Guard Headquarters in Naha.

This is the 352nd day this year that CCG vessels have been spotted in the contiguous zone, setting a new record for annual incursions since the Senkaku Islands were nationalized in 2012. It is an increase of 16 days over the previous record of 336 days in 2022.