The South Korean government on Tuesday lodged a strong protest against Japan's renewed claims to the Dokdo islets in its latest defense white paper, urging for an immediate retraction.
Kim Jung-han, director-general for Asia and Pacific affairs at the Foreign Ministry, summoned Hirohisa Soma, a senior official from the Japanese Embassy, to express regret and urge Tokyo to withdraw the claims.
In a commentary from the ministry spokesperson, Seoul urged Tokyo to realize that its unjust and absurd claims do nothing to help bilateral ties, as the islets are historically, geographically and by international law South Korean territory.
Seoul then vowed to take stern action against any provocation in relation to the islets.
Since 2005, Tokyo has in its annual defense paper made false claims to Dokdo, which is effectively under South Korean control.