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Modern Japanese textbooks describe Dokdo as Korean territory

All Headlines 16:19 August 28, 2012

CHEONAN, South Korea, Aug. 28 (Yonhap) -- A South Korean national museum here said Tuesday it has found some of the 19th and early 20th century Japanese school textbooks and world atlases showing that Japan perceived the islets of Dokdo as part of Korean territory at that time.

The Independence Hall of Korea unveiled five different history and geography textbooks and two different world atlases, which were published for use in the country's elementary, middle and high schools and passed the screening of the Japanese education ministry.

One of the textbooks, which was published in 1887, had a red line on Japanese islands to distinguish them from Korean islands of Ulleung and Dokdo in the East Sea. Other materials also did not include Dokdo in their descriptions of Japan's territory.

"The recently found modern-era Japanese textbooks prove that Japan's claim that Dokdo is an inherent part of its territory is groundless," said Yoon So-yeong, a fellow researcher at the museum.

The find comes amid heightened tension between the two countries over the rocky outcroppings of Dokdo in the East Sea, to which Japan has laid claim, following South Korean President Lee Myung-bak's unprecedented visit there on Aug. 10.

Japan took the islets located some 130 kilometers off South Korea's east coast by force at the time of the Russo-Japanese War (1904-1905) and colonized the Korean Peninsula from 1910 to 1945. South Korea, however, regained the sovereignty over its territory, including Dokdo, after the end of the World War II and has controlled the islets since then.


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