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Last Updated: Wednesday, 24 March, 2004, 10:23 GMT
Chinese activists reach Senkaku
Japanese police have arrested a group of Chinese activists who landed on one of the disputed Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea on Wednesday.

Police landed on the uninhabited island by helicopter after the seven activists evaded Japanese coast guards.

The landing, the latest in a series of Chinese moves to highlight the dispute, was condemned by Japanese officials.

The islands are administered by Japan but claimed by China, which calls them the Diaoyu Islands.

China and Taiwan both laid claim to the Senkaku Islands in the 1970s after oil deposits were found nearby.

They were declared Japanese territory in 1895 and fall under the jurisdiction of Japan's southern Okinawa prefecture.

In recent years a number of expeditions to the islands have been launched by activists claiming them as Chinese territory.

The BBC's Jonathan Head
"The islands would matter little but for the possibility of oil"

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