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Japan's Opens Criminal Probe of Video Leak


Japan says it has opened a criminal investigation into the leak of a Coast Guard video that shows a Chinese fishing trawler deliberately steaming into a Coast Guard vessel.

Prime Minister Naoto Kan apologized in parliament on Monday for the leak, which threatens to further inflame a two-month-old dispute with China.

Mr. Kan said a criminal complaint has been filed and the government will give top priority to finding out who leaked the video, which was posted Friday on the Internet site YouTube.

The video, which was made by the Coast Guard during the September 7 collision, had been shown to a parliamentary committee. But authorities had not wanted to make it public for fear of further irritating China.

Chinese officials reacted furiously to Japan's detention of the fishing boat captain, who was arrested in waters near a disputed group of islands in the East China Sea.

China responded by cutting off high-level contacts with Japan and threatening other action. Japan complained that China blocked shipments of specialized minerals vital to Japan's high-tech economy.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP



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