Evidence Beyond Dispute :
is Chinese Territory !
by Fung Hu-hsiang, Ph. D.
Translated by Bevin Chu
Imperial Chinese "Envoy Chen Kan's Lui Chiu Chronicles" circa Ming Dynasty
Chia-ching 13 (1534 A.D.) proves that the Tiaoyutai Islands belong to China and
are not part of the Ryukyus. Even the Japanese edition of the "Chung Shan
World Almanac" is in complete agreement. (Note: "Chung San" refers to the Ryukyus).
The "Kuo Ru-ling Lui Chiu Chronicles" circa Ming Dynasty
Chia-ching 42 (1563 A.D.)
records that "after Tiaoyutai, we arrived on Redtail Island on the third of the month.
Redtail Island is close to the Ryukyus" clearly indicating that Tiaoyutai belongs to
China, not to the Ryukyus.
During the reign of Ching Emperor Kang-hsi (1785 A.D.), Hsu Pao-kuang's
"Thirty-six Islands Map" and related "Map Legend" of the Ryukyus did not
During the reign of Ching Emperor Chien-lung (1785 A.D.), the "Map and
General Survey of Three Countries" by Japanese cartographer (named Ling
Tse-ping in Chinese) unambiguously indicates that Tiaoyutai belongs to China,
uses the same color for Tiaoyutai as for the rest of China, and uses a different
color for the map of the Ryukyus.
The "Imperial Map of Native and Foreign Lands. Volume 7. Southern
dating from Ching Emperor Tung-chi 2 (1862 A.D.) shows Taiwan's territory as
In Meiji 6 (1837 A.D.), the official Japanese government's "Complete Ryukyu Islands
Map" does not include Tiaoyutai.
In Meiji 10 (1877 A.D.), the official Japanese government publication
"Okinawa Chronicles" similarly does not include Tiaoyutai.
During the reign of Ching Dynasty, Dowager Empress Tse-hei (1893 A.D.), the
Dowager Empress issued a Special Edict granting Tiaoyutai to Sheng Hsuan-hui for
services rendered gathering herbal remedies from Tiaoyutai to treat the Empress's
illnesses. The Special Edict has since been preserved in the Chinese National Archives.
The Japanese first laid claim to Tiaoyutai in Meiji 28 (1895 A.D.), clearly later than
In Meiji 17 (1884 A.D.), Japanese Minister of the Interior Yamagada Akimoto
petitioned Okinawa Prefecture to erect national markers on Tiaoyutai. Japanese
Minister of Foreign Affairs Inouye Kaolu replied that such an act "would attract
the attention of the Ching Nation" and therefore "should await a more opportune
time." (See Japanese Parliamentary Library, Foreign Affairs Archives). This clearly
reveals that the Japanese themselves knew the Tiaoyutai Islands did not belong
to Japan and that they could not annex it outright, but merely bide their time.
In Meiji 28 (1895 A.D.), following the Sino-Japanese War the Ching Imperial Court
was defeated and under coercion ceded Taiwan and Penghu. The Japanese deemed
the time had come to annex Tiaoyutai, but even then hesitated to publicly announce
it in their official publications. A September 1996 issue of a Japanese monthly
("Chan Ching Hsing Wen" in Chinese) cited a 1920 letter of thanks from the Chinese
Consul to Nagasaki for the rescue of Chinese fishermen by Japanese on Tiaoyutai as
evidence of Japanese sovereignty over the island. But since even Taiwan and
Penghu were under Japanese occupation at that time, this argument is obviously
irrelevant and meaningless.
In 1931, while under Japanese occupation, Taipei County and Okinawa Prefecture
quarreled over the jurisdiction of Tiaoyutai. The Tokyo Court decided in favor of
Taipei County, proving that even during Japanese occupation, Taioyutai still belonged
to Taiwan. Therefore when World War II ended in 1945, and in accordance with the
Cairo Conference Japan returned Taiwan and Penghu to China, it was simultaneously
obliged to return Taiyutai - a part of Taiwan - to China.
In 1990, the United States State Department reiterated that "according to the
1951 Peace Treaty with Japan, the United States of America had only administrative
authority over Okinawa, therefore the 1972 handover to Japan has no effect on its
sovereignty." This demonstrates that the United States could at most transfer
administrative authority of the Ryukyu to Japan, not sovereignty, let alone the
sovereignty of Tiaoyutai, which did not belong to the Ryukyus in the first place.
During the Cold War, when American forces were stationed on Taiwan,
military maneuvers were periodically held which required the use of Tiaoyutai
as an aerial bombing target. The American military applied each time to the
ROC (Taiwan) government for authorization, confirming again that Tiaoyutai
is ROC territory.
In 1955, Nationalist Troops while retreating from Tachen Island, were
garrisoned on Tiaoyutai. Approaching Japanese ships would be fired upon
to drive them away. This proves that even at that time the ROC (Taiwan)
government possesed sovereignty over Tiaoyutai.
Finally, the overriding historical fact which renders all Japanese claims to
Tiaoyutai utterly hollow and without force, is the 1952 Sino-Japanese Peace
Treaty, signed by both the governments of China and Japan. Article 4 of the
Treaty explicitly declares that "All treaties, special accords, agreements
concluded prior to the Ming Kuo 30 or December 9, 1941 Sino-Japanese
Accord, are as a consequence of the conclusion of the war, hereby null
and void." In other words, the Ma-kuan Treaty (Shimonoseki Treaty) of 1895
was null and void.
Japan's acquisition of Taiwan and Tiaoyutai were null and void. Japan
simply and plainly cannot make demands or claims of any sort
whatsoever regarding sovereignty over Tiaoyutai.
Let Chinese throughout the world stand united
setting aside political differences to unite
in defense of Tiaoyutai !!