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Tokyo releases video clip against East Sea campaign

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Published : 2014-02-25 20:30
Updated : 2014-02-26 08:58

This screen grab shows part of the video clip that the Japanese foreign ministry released Monday on YouTube to criticize Korea’s push for a dual name policy for the East Sea in U.S. textbooks. (Yonhap)

Tensions between Korea and Japan are growing again as Tokyo released Monday an online video clip that criticizes Seoul’s efforts to have the name East Sea used along with Sea of Japan in U.S. textbooks.

Japan’s latest response came as some U.S. lawmakers pledged to push for the adoption of the dual-name system after Virginia passed a bill this month requiring makers of school textbooks to label the body of water between the two countries with both names.

“The (name) Sea of Japan has been used since the late 18th century. The dual-name policy will only cause global confusion,” the Japanese foreign ministry said in the six-minute video clip. “Seoul’s efforts to change the global term to its own groundless name will not be accepted by the international community.”

The Japanese media reported that the Japanese ministry edited a video clip previously released in 2006. The ministry plans to circulate the video in Korean and English.

The Korean-American community has been lobbying for both names to be used in U.S. textbooks.

While the dual-name policy is expected to go into effect in Virginia from July, some lawmakers in New York and New Jersey are working to legislate a similar bill.

In response to this movement, Sumio Kusaka, Japanese Consul General stationed in New York, sent a letter to New York Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky and Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein, saying that he opposes labeling the sea with two names. Earlier this month, the two lawmakers pledged to join the dual-name movement,

The New York politicians also said they had received dozens of emails from Japanese people opposing the adoption of both names.

The politicians, however, reaffirmed that they would continue to work on the dual-name bill.

By Lee Hyun-jeong (rene@heraldcorp.com)

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