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Japan, Taiwan sign deal over disputed islands

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) -- Japan has agreed to give Taiwanese fishing rights in waters near a group of Japanese-controlled islands in the East China Sea that are also claimed by China and Taiwan.

In a deal signed Wednesday, Japan agreed to let Taiwanese boats fish in a part of its exclusive economic zone near the islands. They are known as Senkaku in Japan and Diaoyu in China.

A Taiwan government statement hailed the deal as enabling the sides to jointly tap the rich resources there.

Japan's compromise could be seen as a way to prevent Taiwan from forming a united front with China in the dispute, though Taiwan has also disputed China's territorial claim.

Taiwan and China split amid civil war in 1949.