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Wednesday, March 28, 2007

A seback for Taiwan

Two online articles on the same topic this morning: "Top court rules China, not Taiwan, owns dorm" from the Daily Yomiuri and "Top court nullifies rulings siding with Taiwan on dorm" from the Japan Times. Japan's Supreme Court 最高裁判所 has ruled in a 40-year-old case that, even though Taiwan purchased the dormitory for Chinese students in Kyoto 京都 in 1952, the ROC government cannot represent the Chinese nation in a lawsuit as Japan switched recognition to the government in Beijing back in 1972. By ruling that Taiwan cannot be a litigant in a lawsuit and that ownership of the dorm belongs to China, the Supreme Court has overturned four lower-court rulings. 

UPDATE: The Japan Times has an editorial today (Sunday, April 1) on the case, wondering if political concerns played a part in the final decision. According to this column, the Supreme Court did not determine who actually has ownership of the dormitory, and Taiwan could file a new lawsuit seeking ownership confirmation. What's another forty years?

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