China on Tuesday refuted the Japanese government's criticism that it is involved in "dangerous" maritime activities, saying that they are based on international and domestic laws.
"I want to point out that China carries out legitimate maritime activities according to international laws and relevant domestic laws," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a press conference. "China takes the path of peaceful development and pursues a defense policy which is defensive in nature."
Hua made the remarks in response to an annual report released by Japan's Defense Ministry earlier in the day that China's activities in the sea and the air include "dangerous actions that could cause a contingency situation."
She said the report makes "unfounded accusations against China" and urged Japan to "correct its attitude."
The Japanese Defense Ministry's White Paper said Japan is concerned about China's potentially dangerous maritime activities and Beijing should act according to international rules rather than by using force.
Tokyo and Beijing have been at odds over the Japanese-controlled Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. The islands, known in China as Diaoyu, are claimed by China and Taiwan.
Tensions between Japan and China have heightened since the Japanese government purchased three of the five uninhabited islands last September from their private Japanese owner to put them under state control.
Citing a January incident in which Japan says a Chinese navy frigate locked weapons' radar on a Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer in the East China Sea, the paper criticized Beijing for denying use of the radar and accused it of giving false explanations over the incident.
Hua said China is committed to the settlement of territorial disputes through dialogue but will not allow any country to violate its territorial sovereignty.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe should make more efforts to build mutual trust between countries and promote regional stability, she said.