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Beautiful Island of Korea , Dokdo

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The Truth about Dokdo

Japan’s claims 

  • 1.“Terra nullius (nobody’s land)”

    During the Russo-Japanese War, Japan claimed Dokdo was “terra nullius” and incorporated it into its own territory in order to monitor Russian ships in the East Sea.
    ⇒ Shimane Prefecture Public Notice No. 40 (Feb. 22, 1905)

  • 2. Claim of sovereignty

    Having illegally incorporated Dokdo by claiming sovereignty over “terra nullius” in 1905, the Japanese government later modified its rationale in a diplomatic document, stating that it had “always been Japanese territory.” These two claims are in logical contradiction.

Historical facts

Korean records : Korean literature and maps record Dokdo as part of Korean territory since 512.

  • Samguksagi (History of the Three Kingdoms) (1145) : "General Yi Sa-bu of Silla conquered Usanguk"
  • Sejong Sillok, Jiriji (Geography Section of the Annals of King Sejong’s Reign) (1454) : Indicates the location of Ulleungdo and Dokdo.

  • Imperial Decree No. 41 of the Empire of Korea (Oct. 25, 1900) : "All of Ulleungdo, Jukdo, and Seokdo (Dokdo) are under the jurisdiction of Uldo-gun."

Japanese records : Official documents reveal that Japan acknowledged Dokdo was not Japanese territory.

  • Tottorihan’s reply to an inquiry of the Edo Shogunate (Dec. 25, 1695) : "Neither Takeshima (Ulleungdo) nor Matsushima (Dokdo) belongs to the Tottori-han."
  • Dajokan Order (Mar. 29, 1877) ※ At the time, Dajokan was the highest administrative body (Grand Council of State).

Global perspectives

  • The Cairo Declaration (1943) and the Potsdam Declaration (1945): "Japan will also be expelled from all other territories which she has taken by violence and greed."
  • Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers Index Number (SCAPIN) 677 (1946)

▶01 Dokdo is the symbol of the restoration of Korea’s sovereignty.
▶02 The world acknowledged Dokdo as a territory that was illegally seized but restored to its rightful owner.
▶03 Japan’s territorial claims over Dokdo signify that it intends to repeat its history of aggression against the Korean Peninsula.


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