Aerial view of Dokdo islets (The Korea Herald)
South Korea lodged a strong protest Saturday against Japan's renewed claims to South Korea's easternmost islets of Dokdo.
Seoul's foreign ministry called in Hirohisa Soma, a senior official at the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, and expressed regret over Japan's annual event meant to publicize its territorial claim to Dokdo.
South Korea has been in effective control of Dokdo, with a small police detachment, since its liberation from Japanese colonial rule in 1945.
Still, Japan claims sovereignty to the rocky outcroppings in the East Sea that divides the Korean Peninsula and Japan.
Dokdo has long been a thorn in relations between the two countries.