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Building facility on Dokdo belongs to South Korea's sovereignty: minister

By Park Sae-jin Posted : November 19, 2014, 17:00 Updated : November 19, 2014, 17:00


South Korea will push ahead with its plan to build a facility in the islets disputed with Japan despite Tokyo's opposition to the project, Seoul's maritim affairs minister said Wednesday.

"The construction project is not nullified. It will be pushed ahead after reviewing some issues," Lee Ju-young, minister of maritime affairs and fisheries, told lawmakers.

Lee said Dokdo, called Takeshima in Japan, has been an inherent part of South Korea's territory historically, geographically and under international law, noting that building a facility there belongs to the country's sovereignty, which Japan cannot interfere with.

The islets have been controlled by South Korea since 1954 since it stationed border guards there. South Korea says the islets were the first victim of Japan's colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula from 1910 to 1945.

South Korea began in 2008 to review the project to build a facility on the islets, which lie halfway between South Korea and Japan. The facility was aimed at accommodating tourists.

By Ruchi Singh

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