Chinese ships in disputed waters: Japan

A Chinese marine surveillance ship is seen near disputed islets, known as the Senkaku islands in Japan and Diaoyu islands in China, in the East China Sea, on March 12, 2013. Two Chinese government ships have sailed into the waters of disputed Tokyo-controlled islands, according to Japan's coastguard

Two Chinese government ships sailed into the waters of disputed Tokyo-controlled islands on Saturday, Japan's coastguard said.

The surveillance ships entered the 12-nautical-mile zone around the Senkakus, which Beijing claims and calls the Diaoyus, shortly before 1:00 pm (0400 GMT), the coastguard said.

Chinese government ships have frequently spent time around the disputed island chain since Tokyo nationalised three of the islands last September.

The islands are also claimed by Taiwan.