SEOUL, Dec. 13 (Yonhap) -- The ruling Democratic Party's presidential candidate Lee Jae-myung on Monday criticized Japan's excessive reactions to the South Korean police chief's recent trip to Dokdo for "meddling in another country's policy."
The comment came during a telephone call with officers from Dokdo Security Police as part of his nationwide election campaign.
Last month, National Police Agency Commissioner-General Kim Chang-yong visited Dokdo to encourage officials working on the country's easternmost islets.
But his visit has drawn strong protest from the Japanese government, including a boycott of a vice ministerial joint press conference held in Washington.
"Japan has attempted to emphasize Dokdo as an area of international territorial dispute," said Lee. "Dokdo is definitely under effective control of South Korea."
Dokdo has long been a recurring source of tension between the two neighbors, as Tokyo continues to make sovereignty claims in its policy papers, public statements and school textbooks.
South Korea has been in effective control of Dokdo, with a small police detachment, since its liberation from Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule.
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