Rightwing Japanese Lawmakers to Be Turned Back at Airport

Three rightwing Japanese lawmakers will fly to Seoul on Monday to visit Ulleung Island on a mission to stress Japan's dubious territorial claim to Korea's Dokdo islets. The three are coming despite a warning from the Korean government that it cannot guarantee their safety.

Yoshitaka Shindo, Tomomi Inada, and Masahisa Sato of the conservative Liberal Democratic Party are expected to leave Haneda Airport in Tokyo at 8:55 a.m. and arrive at Gimpo Airport in Seoul around 11:20 a.m.

A fourth legislator, Katsuei Hirasawa, apparently decided to cancel his trip at the last minute.

But the government says they will be turned back at immigration. Once turned back, they will have to wait in arrivals for their flight back to Tokyo. The government hopes to put them back on the same plane, which leaves for Tokyo at 12:40 p.m.

With the exception of the rightwing the Sankei Shimbun, the Japanese media have carried no reports about the planned trip.

Meanwhile, a Japanese academic tried to enter the country after arriving in Incheon international airport at 9:30 p.m on Sunday, but his entry was refused. Masao Shimojo, a professor at Takushoku University who claims that Korea's easternmost Dokdo islets belong to Japan, was sent home after four hours. He was supposed to visit Ulleung Island with the three lawmakers on Monday

englishnews@chosun.com / Aug. 01, 2011 09:02 KST