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Sea of Japan

The Sea of Japan (East Sea (of Korea); see below) is a marginal sea of the western Pacific Ocean, bound by the Japanese islands of Hokkaido, Honshu and Kyushu and Sakhalin island on the east, and the Korean peninsula and Russia on the west.

The sea is connected to other seas by six shallow straits: the Strait of Tartary or Mamiya Strait between the Asian mainland and Sakhalin; La Perouse Strait or Soya Strait between the islands of Sakhalin and Hokkaido; Tsugaru Strait between the islands of Hokkaido and Honshu; Kanmon Strait between the islands of Honshu and Kyushu; Tsushima Strait between the islands of Kyushu and Tsushima; and Korea Strait between Tsushima and the Korean peninsula.

The deepest point is 3712 meters below sea level. The sea has two major basins, Yamato Basin and Japan Basin. They are rich fishing grounds.


The sea is called:

The current naming of the body of water between Japan, Korea, and Russia is an open issue, according to a 1998 decision of the 7th United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names and a 1974 International Hydrographic Organization resolution regarding the naming of disputed bodies of water [1]. According to UNCSGN and in accordance with the IHO resolution, the names "Sea of Japan" and "East Sea" are to be used simultaneously. ("East Sea" is preferred by South Korea, while "East Sea of Korea" is preferred by North Korea.)

For background on the dispute and a summary of the different points of view, see Dispute over the name Sea of Japan.