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S. Korea vows 'stern measures' against Japan over textbook claims

South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung Se on Thursday vowed to take "stern measures" against Japan if Tokyo steps up its territorial claim to South Korean-controlled islets in the Sea of Japan in new history textbooks, according to Yonhap News Agency. "Right after the announcement is made, (South Korea) will take stern measures accordingly," Yun was quoted as telling reporters. "We are closely watching the situation, and the government may have an opportunity in the near future to convey its stance," Yun said.

FM vows stern action against Japan's expected claims to Dokdo

SEOUL, April 3 (Yonhap) -- The South Korean foreign minister pledged Thursday to take stern action against Japan if Tokyo steps up its territorial claim to the easternmost South Korean islets of Dokdo in its new history textbooks. Japan is scheduled to announce the results of its examination of revised elementary school textbooks on Friday, with Seoul expecting Tokyo to ratchet up its territorial claim to Dokdo. "Right after the announcement is made, (South Korea) will take stern measures accordingly," Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se told reporters.

FM vows stern action against Japan's expected claims to Dokdo

SEOUL, April 3 (Yonhap) -- The South Korean foreign minister pledged Thursday to take stern action against Japan if Tokyo steps up its territorial claim to the easternmost South Korean islets of Dokdo in its new history textbooks. Japan is scheduled to announce the results of its examination of revised elementary school textbooks on Friday, with Seoul expecting Tokyo to ratchet up its territorial claim to Dokdo. "Right after the announcement is made, (South Korea) will take stern measures accordingly," Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se told reporters.

Israel reissues tenders for E. Jerusalem settler homes

Israel reissued Tuesday a call for tenders for settler homes in annexed east Jerusalem in a move said likely to hike tensions as Washington struggles to salvage crisis-hit peace talks, an NGO said. Peace Now's Hagit Ofran, confirming the tenders were for 708 homes in Gilo, a settlement neighbourhood of Arab east Jerusalem, saying "the ministry of housing is trying to forcefully undermine the peace process... and (US Secretary of State) John Kerry's efforts to promote it.

Israel pushes tenders for 700 east Jerusalem homes

Israel on Tuesday pushed tenders for more than 700 homes in a settlement neighbourhood in annexed east Jerusalem, as Washington made intensive efforts to salvage a crisis-hit peace process, an Israeli NGO said. "The ministry of housing is trying to forcefully undermine the peace process ... and (US Secretary of State) John Kerry's efforts to promote it," charged Peace Now's Hagit Ofran, confirming the tenders were for 708 homes in the Gilo settlement in Arab east Jerusalem. dar-hmw/jad/al

Iraq attacks kill five, one month before elections

Attacks in Sunni-majority areas of Iraq killed five people Sunday, exactly a month ahead of parliamentary polls that remain in disarray after the mass resignations of election commissioners last week. The violence came hours after seven soldiers were shot dead at a checkpoint in a late-night attack by militants in the north, the latest sign of a months-long surge in bloodshed that has killed nearly 500 people so far this month.

China to exclude Japan from international fleet review in Qingdao

The Chinese navy has not extended an invitation to Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force to take part in an international fleet review China will host late next month, a senior Japanese Defense Ministry official said Sunday. Beijing is believed to be intentionally excluding Japan from the event, to which various nations in the Asia-Pacific region are expected to send ships, due to the two countries' tensions over a group of islands in the East China Sea, the official said.

3 Chinese ships enter Japanese waters near Senkaku Islands

Three Chinese coast guard vessels intruded into Japanese territorial waters around the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea on Saturday, the Japan Coast Guard said. The intrusion was the seventh this year, following one on March 15. The Japanese-controlled uninhabited islets are claimed by China and Taiwan, which call the islands Diaoyu and Tiaoyutai, respectively. ==Kyodo

5.4 magnitude quake strikes off India's Nicobar Islands

A 5.4-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of India's remote Nicobar Islands on Friday, the US Geological Survey said, while local authorities reported two other quakes. There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage. The first quake struck at 07:11 pm (13:41 GMT) in the coastal waters, according an official of the Indian Meteorological Department. "No immediate action is needed. We are just keeping a watch," Deen Mohammad, an officer at the disaster management authority in Port Blair, the capital of Andaman and Nicobar group of islands, told AFP.

5.4 magnitude quake strikes off India's Nicobar Islands

A 5.4-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of India's remote Nicobar Islands on Friday, the US Geological Survey said. There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage. The quake struck at 07:11 pm (13:41 GMT) in the coastal waters, an official of the Indian Meteorological Department told AFP. The earthquake hit at a fairly shallow depth of 6.2 miles (10 kilometres), the US Geological Survey said. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands form an archipelago in the eastern Indian Ocean.
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