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South Korean protesters swim to disputed islands

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - 01:19

Aug. 15 - South Korean swimmers take part in a 220 kilometre relay swim to an island at the centre of a territorial dispute between Seoul and Tokyo. Simon Hanna reports.

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Two South Koreans finish the last leg of a 220 kilometre relay swim to islands at the heart of a long-running territorial dispute. The islands known at Dokdo in Korea and Takeshima in Japan are claimed by both Seoul and Tokyo. Lieing roughly equal distance from the two countries they are believed have natural gas deposits potentially worth billions of dollars. The swim marks the anniversary of Korea's liberation from Japanese colonial rule that lasted from 1910-1945. (SOUNDBITE) (Korean) SWIMMER KIM SEA-HOON: "Because not all our people can come here by swimming, we came as their representatives. The swim was tough, there was so much rain and we had to fight against rough waves at sea. It was dangerous, but thinking of Dokdo and of our country, we were able to overcome everything." Tension between the two countries has risen since South Korean President Lee Myung-bak visited the disputed islands last week. Japan says the islands are part of its sovereign territory illegally occupied by South Korea, and plans to take the dispute to the International Court of Justice.

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South Korean protesters swim to disputed islands

Wednesday, August 15, 2012 - 01:19