Dokdo, the First Victim of Japan’s Aggression Against the Korean Peninsula
…the Japanese government must well remember the fact that it deprived Korea of her sovereignty for over forty years through imperial Japanese aggression. As it is no doubt well aware, the aggression took place in stages, culminating in the annexation of the entire Korean peninsula by Japan in 1910. But, in fact, Japan had seized the power to control Korea in 1904 when it forced upon Korea to sign the Korea-Japan Treaty of 1904 and the Korea-Japan Protocol of August 1904.
In the following year (1905),
the Shimane Prefectural Government alleged that it had incorporated Dokdo into its jurisdiction.
It is Dokdo that was the first Korean territory to fall victim to Japan’s aggression against the Korean peninsula. Now, with the Japanese government persistently making an absurd claim over Dokdo, the Koreans cannot help but have serious suspicion if Japan is going down the same path of aggression once again.
Against this backdrop, Dokdo means much more to the Koreans than merely being a small island in the East Sea. It symbolizes Korea’s sovereignty against Japan and represents a critical test of the integrity of Korean sovereignty.
Pyun Yung-tai, the third Minister of
Foreign Affairs of the ROK (October 28, 1954)