More than 40 veteran military officers and scholars from the Chinese mainland and Taiwan pooled their wisdom at a symposium on safeguarding the territorial sovereignty and oceanic rights and interests of the Chinese nation.
 
The symposium, the second of its kind, took place on Tuesday in Bo’ao, a scenic town in China’s southernmost Hainan province.
 
According to a declaration issued after the symposium, islands in the South China Sea, the Diaoyu Islands and their affiliated islets were first discovered, named and used by the Chinese, and are the shared inheritance of both the Chinese mainland and Taiwan. China has indisputable sovereignty over them, backed by historical facts and jurisprudential evidence.
 
This year has witnessed escalating tensions over the South China Sea and the Diaoyu Islands. In particular, the Japanese government, despite firm opposition and solemn representations from both sides across the Taiwan Strait, announced the so-called "purchase" of the Diaoyu Island and the affiliated Nan Xiaodao and Bei Xiaodao to "nationalize" them, the declaration says.
 
This provocative move is a gross violation of the Chinese nation’s territorial sovereignty and oceanic rights and interests, and it gravely jeopardizes peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region and the world at large, according to the declaration.
 
The declaration also appeals to the people from both sides of the Taiwan Strait to join hands in defending the interests of the Chinese nation.
 
Despite strong warnings and opposition voiced by top Chinese leaders, the Japanese government on Tuesday signed a purchase contract with the Kurihara family, which Japan claims is the "private owner" of the Diaoyu Islands.
 
 

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