**Japan Scrambles fighter jets After Chinese Plane Enters Disputed Territory**
Japan has scrambled F-15 fighter jets after a Chinese plane entered disputed airspace near contested islands in the East China Sea.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura says the jets were sent in response to a Chinese Oceanic Administration airplane that was spotted near the islands on Thursday.
A spokesperson for the Japanese prime minister's office confirmed to VOA that two Japan Air Self Defense Force F-15 jets and a E-2C "Hawkeye" observation aircraft were scrambled from Naha, Okinawa.
He said Vice Foreign Minister Chikao Kawai told his office to lodge an official protest with the Chinese government in response.
The uninhabited islands, known in Japan as Senkaku and in China as Diaoyu, have been the source of major tension between the two Asian powers.
Since Tokyo purchased the islands from a private landowner in September, China has sent regular patrol missions to the disputed waters, in what analysts say is Beijing's attempt to establish the fact that it can come and go as its pleases.
The Japanese Coast Guard says four Chinese maritime surveillance vessels were seen near the Japan-administered islands earlier on Thursday.
**EU Reaches Eurozone Bank Supervision Deal**
European Union finance ministers have reached a deal to create a single supervisor for eurozone banks, in a bid to address a key component of the continent's financial struggles.
The agreement reached early Thursday gives the European Central Bank broad powers to oversee banks in the 17 nations that use the euro currency, as well as institutions in other EU nations that opt in to the system.
French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici praised the agreement, saying it will help boost outside confidence in the eurozone.
EU leaders agreed on the principal of a central banking oversight body at a summit in June and promised a plan by the end of the year. The oversight is due to begin in March and be fully operational in early 2014.
Failing banks have drastically affected some European economies, spreading the debt crisis to governments that stepped in to save their banks.
The new oversight body will ultimately allow Europe's rescue fund to directly inject money into troubled banks. It is also the first step toward a banking union with the ability to close down failing banks.