Monday, 4 January 2016

The Nine-Dash Line 南海九段线

Nine-dash Line
The nine-dash line (highlighted in green) as formerly claimed by the PRC

The nine-dash line (Chinese: 南海九段线; pinyin: nánhǎi jiǔduàn xiàn; literally: "nine-segment line of the South China Sea"; Vietnamese: Đường lưỡi bò; literally: "cow's tongue line"), and at various times also referred to as the "10-dash line" and the "11-dash line", refers to the demarcation line used initially by the government of the Republic of China (ROC / Taiwan), and subsequently also by the government of the People's Republic of China (PRC), for their claims of the major part of the South China Sea. The contested area in the South China Sea includes the Paracel Islands, the Spratly Islands, and various other areas including the Pratas Islands, the Macclesfield Bank and the Scarborough Shoal. The claim encompasses the area of Chinese land reclamation known as the "great wall of sand".

An early map showing a U-shaped eleven-dash line was published in the then Republic of China on 1 December 1947. Two of the dashes in the Gulf of Tonkin were later removed at the behest of Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai, reducing the total to nine. Subsequent editions added a dash to the other end of the line, extending it into the East China Sea.


Despite having made the vague claim public in 1947, China has not (as of 2015) filed a formal and specifically defined claim to the area within the dashes. The People's Republic of China added a tenth-dash line to the east of Taiwan island in 2013 as a part of its official sovereignty claim to the disputed territories in the South China Sea.


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The Nine-Dash Line
The first map showing the nine-dash line had 11 dashes

There are many competing claims to territory in the South China Sea, but only China and Taiwan claim to own it all.

Beijing’s claim - not only to the Spratly Islands, but also the Scarborough Shoal and the Paracel Islands - is marked out on its own maps by the infamous “nine-dash line”, which encompasses a huge tongue-shaped expanse stretching right up to the coasts of the Philippines and Vietnam and even Borneo. The Philippines and Vietnam also claim large areas of the South China Sea. Both say most of the Spratly Islands belong to them.

For decades China has done little to enforce its vague and sweeping claim. Now that is changing.

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US scheming to deny China’s nine-dashed line of South China Sea



The nine-dashed line was first discovered and owned by China. It is a maritime boundary line formed after China’s long-term jurisdiction and development of the South China Sea islands. 

China holds sovereignty and jurisdiction rights within the nine-dashed line. Other countries’ ships have the right to freedom of navigation and their aircraft enjoy rights to fly over the territory. 

There had been no problem with the nine-dashed line before the 1970s, but with Vietnam, the Philippines and other countries pushing further territorial claims, more governments are beginning to deny legitimacy of the nine-dashed line. 

related: South China Sea Is Indisputable Part of China

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China's Island Factory

In 1823, US President James Monroe outlined what was later to become known as the “Monroe Doctrine”.

It identified the Western hemisphere as America’s backyard, and nowhere more so than the Caribbean Sea. Old European colonial powers were told to keep out.

Today China is doing something very similar in the East and South China seas.

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Monroe Doctrine


The Monroe Doctrine was a U.S. foreign policy regarding domination of the American continent in 1823. It stated that further efforts by European nations to colonize land or interfere with states in North or South America would be viewed as acts of aggression, requiring U.S. intervention. At the same time, the doctrine noted that the United States would neither interfere with existing European colonies nor meddle in the internal concerns of European countries. The Doctrine was issued in 1823 at a time when nearly all Latin American colonies of Spain and Portugal had achieved or were at the point of gaining independence from the Portuguese and Spanish Empires. The United States, working in agreement with Great Britain, wanted to guarantee that no European power would move in.

President James Monroe first stated the doctrine during his seventh annual State of the Union Address to Congress. The term "Monroe Doctrine" itself was coined in 1850. By the end of the nineteenth century, Monroe's declaration was seen as a defining moment in the foreign policy of the United States and one of its longest-standing tenets. It would be invoked by many U.S. statesmen and several U.S. presidents, including Ulysses S. Grant, Theodore Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and many others.

The intent and impact of the Monroe Doctrine persisted with only minor variations for more than a century. Its alleged objective was to free the newly independent colonies of Latin America from European intervention and avoid situations which could make the New World a battleground for the Old World powers, so that the United States could exert its own influence undisturbed. The doctrine asserted that the New World and the Old World were to remain distinctly separate spheres of influence, for they were composed of entirely separate and independent nations.

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Monroe Doctrine

At the time of the creation of the Monroe Doctrine, the United States was a young nation determined to keep the Western hemisphere free of foreign influence. This was mainly targeting Europe, specifically Spain. Spain had many colonies in Latin America. However, these former colonies were now independent nations. To stop other European powers from colonizing, the Monroe Doctrine was formed to restrict the spheres of influence formed in the areas which were so close to the U.S. The doctrine also emphasized the traditional isolationist policies modeled after Washington’s Farewell Address.

This document was created as a policy of isolationism. The U.S. prohibited any European involvement in Latin American affairs, including the establishment of new colonies. In turn, the United States agreed to not get occupied in European dealings. President James Monroe (1817-1825) enacted this doctrine on December 2, 1823, after the former Spanish colonies in Latin America gained their independence from Spain.

There was definitely some controversy regarding the Monroe Doctrine. The nations of Europe did not feel this doctrine was appropriate since it limited their spheres of influence which, in the age of imperialism, stopped their newly expanding, wealthy empires. However, due to the United States’ amateur navy, the doctrine was disregarded at first.

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Beijing details historic claim to South China Sea
Source: China Daily. Inset right, the engraved Fuchang map dating from 1136AD which shows China’s borders ending at Hainan island

The China Daily timeline infographic, republished by Chinese news service Xinhuanet, reaches back as far as the 21st century BC, claiming pearls, shells and turtles from the South China Sea had been presented as tribute to the rulers of the Zhou Dynasty.

Han Dynasty pottery shards dating from 206BC were found on Taiping Island (in the Spratley chain), the graphic claims, while documents dating from as early as 280AD refer to a sea known as “Zhanghai” being mapped and patrolled.

The collection of nine panels goes on to list a series of obscure modern international publications as recognising China’s claims, as well as a selection of 1960s and 70s Vietnamese reference books using Chinese names for some islands and uninhabited reefs and shoals between the two nations.

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The South China Sea: Contested Waters
Territorial Claims – Maps

9-Dash Line Map – PRC
9-Dash Line Map – Taiwan
Before and After: The South China Sea Transformed
China Claims A Big Backyard
China’s New Military Installations in the Spratlys, 2015
Chinese Building Projects in the South China Sea, 2015 – Images & Analysis
Disputed Claims in the South China Sea – AFP
EEZ Claims and Hydrocarbon Resources – NGS
EEZ Claims and Hydrocarbon Resources
EEZ Limits in the Indian Ocean Basin – Forbes
Exploration Blocks Offshore Vietnam – Buszynski and Iskander
Interactive Map and Gazetteer of the Spratly Islands – southchinasea.org
Joint Seismic Survey Area – Buszynski and Iskander
Maritime Claims and Agreements, US State Department, 2013
Overlapping EEZ Claims and Oil Fields – southchinasea.org
Resource Sharing – Four Scenarios – Valencia et al
South China Sea Claims – Forbes
South China Sea Islands – University of Texas
South China Sea Tables and Maps – US EIA
Sovereignty Claims and Agreements in the South China Sea
Spratly Islands – Conflicting Claims – southchinasea.org
Spratley Islands – Taiwan
Spratly Islands – U of Texas
Taiwan’s Boundary Claims – Postal Stamp Images
Territorial Claims in the south China Sea – R.B. Cribb
Territorial Disputes in Waters near China, NYTimes, 2014
Unclaimed Areas of the South China Sea – Ji Guoxing
French-Chinese map of Tonkin Gulf – 1887
India Orientalis, J. Hondius, 1606, Suarez, 1999
Indies, Petrus Plancius, 1594, J. Fisscher, 1617, Suarez, 1999
Ming treasure Ship and St. Maria
Oldest British Map of the South China Sea

Cheng Ho’s Star Atlas


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MAP OF SOUTH CHINA SEA CLAIMS
Source: Wang, K.H. (2010). The ROC’s Maritime Claims and Practices with Special Reference to the South China Sea. Ocean Development & International Law, 41(4), p. 244. doi:10.1080/00908320.2010.499282
Source: Dutton, P. (2011). Three Disputes and Three Objectives: China and the South China Sea. Naval War College Review, 64(4), p. 46.

Original 11-dotted line map published by Republic of China in 1947. In 1950s People’s Republic of China removed 2 dotted lines in the area of Gulf of Tonkin after it reached an agreement with Vietnam.

Since then map is referred to as 9-dotted/9-dash/U-shaped line.

Map attached to Chinese note verbale to UN in protest against joint Malaysia-Vietnam submission to Committee on the Limits of Continental Shelf (May 2009)

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CHINA’S NINE-DASHED LINE FACES RENEWED ASSAULT

China’s ambiguous claim to the South China Sea, approximately demarcated by a series of hash marks known as the “nine-dashed line,” faced objections from an expanding number of parties over the past two weeks. While a challenge from the United States came from an unsurprising source, actions by Indonesia and Vietnam were unexpected in their tone and timing.

On December 5th, the U.S. State Department released its analysis of the compatibility of China’s nine-dashed line with international law. The report attempted to set aside the issue of sovereignty and explore “several possible interpretations of the dashed-line claim and the extent to which those interpretations are consistent with the international law of the sea.” The analysis found that as a demarcation of claims to land features within the line and their conferred maritime territory, the least expansive interpretation, the claim is consistent with international law but reiterated that ultimate sovereignty is subject to resolution with the other claimants.

As a national boundary, the report went on, the line “would not have a proper legal basis under the law of the sea,” due to its unilateral nature and its inconsistent distance from land features that could confer maritime territory. Alternately, although many commentators have indicated China bases its claims on “historic” rights pre-dating the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) of 1982, the report argued that the history China points to does not fit the narrow “category of historic claims recognized” in UNCLOS under which historic rights may be conferred. Lastly, the report noted that as China has filed no formal claim supporting its nine-dashed line, the ambiguity over the exact nature and location of the line itself undermines under international law China’s argument that it possesses maritime rights to the circumscribed waters.

How The Eleven-Dash Line Became a Nine-Dash Line

Since last year, China has made a number of big moves in the South China Sea, triggering protests in Vietnam and complaints from the Philippines to an international tribunal and criticism from the U.S. and Japan. Recently, those disagreements have intensified.

Towards the end of the Cultural Revolution, China brought out a movie titled "Great Wall in the South China Sea," the screen debut for director Liu Xiaoqing, which was about the Chinese Communist Party versus the so-called "Chiang Kai-shek bandit army."

Nowadays, Beijing regards the nationalist government of Taiwan as its ally in protecting the South China Sea. But the extreme position recently delineated by Taiwan president Ma Ying-jeou on the South China Sea question seems like a slap in the face for Beijing.



What's China's basis of the 9-dash line?
Normally, a country would claim the islands, and their surrounding water

But what about the 9-dash line. It seems that China drew the line, then claimed everything within it? They claims the water first, then the islands in it? What does each dash represent? How do they determine the dash? How do they know that this dash is exactly here and not there? Why is it 9-dash, rather 5-dash, 15-dash or a full line?

9 dash line is the several intermittent dotted lines on maps published by China to define borders in South China Sea over which China claims sovereignty . It is originated from Chinese historic practice instead of international conventions or treaties. In 1909 the Viceroy of Guangdong and Guangxi Province of Qing Dynasty sent his navy commander and the fleet consisting of 3 ships to explore the Xisha Islands,which became the well known China's first sovereignty claim over this area.

After Japan invaded Manchuria during the Sept 18th Incident in 1931 , the French colony government in Vietnam occupied  6 islands of the Nansha Islands, and at the end of this year, French Foreign Ministry issued an statement to Chinese Embassy in France claimed it had rights of inheritance over Xisha Islands.  In the protest issued by Chinese Foreign Ministry, it provided the border line under Frontier Delimitation Convention signed between China and France in 1887, under which the border line agreed by both parties located at 120 East Longitude might be regarded as predecessor of today's 9 dash line.



China’s 9-dashed Lines
China’s new “national boundaries” under the 9-dashed lines Macclesfield  Bank

In December 1947, the Kuomintang Government in China adopted the 9-dashed lines claim. The claim was embodied in a map entitled “Location Map of the South Sea Islands” released within China in February 1948, with 11 dashes forming U-shaped lines covering almost the entire South China Sea. The Original 1947 9-dashed Lines Map of China Entitled “Location Map of the South Sea Islands” The title of the map indicates a claim to the islands, not the sea. China did not explain the meaning or basis of the 11 dashes. China did not also give the coordinates of the 11 dashes. China claimed the islands enclosed by the 11 dashes, namely Dongsha Islands (Pratas), Xisha Islands (Paracels), Zhongsha Island (Macclesfield Bank), and Nansha Islands (Spratlys). China was silent on any claim to the surrounding waters. This claim is contrary to the 1946 Constitution of the Republic of China, which declared China’s territory to be the same territory as that of the Qing Dynasty, with Hainan Island as the southernmost territory.

The Original 1947 9 dashed Lines Map of China - In 1950, China, under communist rule, announced the removal of two dashes in the Gulf of Tonkin without any explanation. The U- shaped lines became known as the 9-dashed lines. In 2009, Vietnam and Malaysia jointly submitted to the United Nations their Extended Continental Shelf (ECS) claims. China protested the claims and attached to its protest a map of its 9-dashed lines, claiming (1) “indisputable sovereignty” over all the islands and the “adjacent” waters enclosed by the lines, and (2) “sovereign rights and jurisdiction” over the “relevant” waters of all the islands enclosed by the lines. This was the first time that China officially announced the 9-dashed lines to the world. China did not explain the meaning or basis of the dashes, or the meaning of “adjacent” and “relevant” waters. Neither did China give the coordinates of the dashes.

Nine-dashed Lines Map Submitted by China to UN in 2009. In 2013, China released a new map of China, adding a 10th dash on the eastern side of Taiwan. In its 2013 map, China claims the 10 dashed lines as its “national boundaries.” The 2013 China map was published by Sino-Maps Press, under the jurisdiction of China’s State Bureau of Surveying and Mapping. This means the 2013 Map is an official Chinese government map. In its Note Verbale of June 7, 2013 to China, the Philippines stated it "strongly objects to the indication that the nine-dash lines are China's national boundaries in the West Philippine Sea/South China Sea.” In 2014, China’s Hainan Province began enforcing fishing regulations interpreting the “adjacent” and “relevant” waters as those waters enclosed by the 9-dashed lines, comprising 85.7% of the South China Sea. Printed in a 1947 map, China’s 9-dashed lines have no fixed coordinates. Originally 11 dashes, two dashes in the Gulf of Tonkin were removed in 1950 without explanation. In 2013, one dash was added east of Taiwan. The new 2013 China map, with 10 dashed lines, is printed by SinoMaps Press. China’s New Map with 10 dashes (2013)


What we are fighting for


The Spratly Islands - not so long ago known primarily as a rich fishing ground - have turned into an international flashpoint as Chinese leaders insist with increasing truculence that the islands, rocks, and reefs have been, in the words of Premier Wen Jiabao, “China’s historical territory since ancient times.” Normally, the overlapping territorial claims to sovereignty and maritime boundaries ought to be resolved through a combination of customary international law, adjudication before the International Court of Justice or the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, or arbitration under Annex VII of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). While China has ratified UNCLOS, the treaty by and large rejects “historically based” claims, which are precisely the type Beijing periodically asserts. On September 4, 2012, China’s foreign minister, Yang Jiechi, told US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that there is “plenty of historical and jurisprudence evidence to show that China has sovereignty over the islands in the South China Sea and the adjacent waters.”

China’s claim to the Spratlys on the basis of history runs aground on the fact that the region’s past empires did not exercise sovereignty. In pre-modern Asia, empires were characterized by undefined, unprotected, and often changing frontiers. The notion of suzerainty prevailed. Unlike a nation-state, the frontiers of Chinese empires were neither carefully drawn nor policed but were more like circles or zones, tapering off from the center of civilization to the undefined periphery of alien barbarians.

More importantly, in its territorial disputes with neighboring India, Burma, and Vietnam, Beijing always took the position that its land boundaries were never defined, demarcated, and delimited. But now, when it comes to islands, shoals, and reefs in the South China Sea, Beijing claims otherwise. In other words, China’s claim that its land boundaries were historically never defined and delimited stands in sharp contrast with the stance that China’s maritime boundaries were always clearly defined and delimited. Herein lies a basic contradiction in the Chinese stand on land and maritime boundaries which is untenable. Actually, it is the mid-twentieth-century attempts to convert the undefined frontiers of ancient civilizations and kingdoms enjoying suzerainty into clearly defined, delimited, and demarcated boundaries of modern nation-states exercising sovereignty that lie at the center of China’s territorial and maritime disputes with neighboring countries. Put simply, sovereignty is a post-imperial notion ascribed to nation-states, not ancient empires.

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Historical Fiction: China’s South China Sea Claims

The Spratly Islands—not so long ago known primarily as a rich fishing ground—have turned into an international flashpoint as Chinese leaders insist with increasing truculence that the islands, rocks, and reefs have been, in the words of Premier Wen Jiabao, “China’s historical territory since ancient times.” Normally, the overlapping territorial claims to sovereignty and maritime boundaries ought to be resolved through a combination of customary international law, adjudication before the International Court of Justice or the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, or arbitration under Annex VII of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). While China has ratified UNCLOS, the treaty by and large rejects “historically based” claims, which are precisely the type Beijing periodically asserts. On September 4, 2012, China’s foreign minister, Yang Jiechi, told US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that there is “plenty of historical and jurisprudence evidence to show that China has sovereignty over the islands in the South China Sea and the adjacent waters.”

As far as the “jurisprudence evidence” is concerned, the vast majority of international legal experts have concluded that China’s claim to historic title over the South China Sea, implying full sovereign authority and consent for other states to transit, is invalid. The historical evidence, if anything, is even less persuasive. There are several contradictions in China’s use of history to justify its claims to islands and reefs in the South China Sea, not least of which is its polemical assertion of parallels with imperialist expansion by the United States and European powers in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Justifying China’s attempts to expand its maritime frontiers by claiming islands and reefs far from its shores, Jia Qingguo, professor at Beijing University’s School of International Studies, argues that China is merely following the example set by the West. “The United States has Guam in Asia which is very far away from the US and the French have islands in the South Pacific, so it is nothing new,” Jia told AFP recently.

China’s claim to the Spratlys on the basis of history runs aground on the fact that the region’s past empires did not exercise sovereignty. In pre-modern Asia, empires were characterized by undefined, unprotected, and often changing frontiers. The notion of suzerainty prevailed. Unlike a nation-state, the frontiers of Chinese empires were neither carefully drawn nor policed but were more like circles or zones, tapering off from the center of civilization to the undefined periphery of alien barbarians. More importantly, in its territorial disputes with neighboring India, Burma, and Vietnam, Beijing always took the position that its land boundaries were never defined, demarcated, and delimited. But now, when it comes to islands, shoals, and reefs in the South China Sea, Beijing claims otherwise. In other words, China’s claim that its land boundaries were historically never defined and delimited stands in sharp contrast with the stance that China’s maritime boundaries were always clearly defined and delimited. Herein lies a basic contradiction in the Chinese stand on land and maritime boundaries which is untenable. Actually, it is the mid-twentieth-century attempts to convert the undefined frontiers of ancient civilizations and kingdoms enjoying suzerainty into clearly defined, delimited, and demarcated boundaries of modern nation-states exercising sovereignty that lie at the center of China’s territorial and maritime disputes with neighboring countries. Put simply, sovereignty is a post-imperial notion ascribed to nation-states, not ancient empires.


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The South China Sea: Drawing the Nine Dash Line

As President Xi Jinping tours the western world advocating Chinese businesses, the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) continues incrementally asserting dominance over territory in the South China Sea. Territorial claims in the South China Sea have been contentious for centuries, but recent land reclamation attempts by China have made it a global security issue. The U.S. Navy is now reportedly preparing to patrol within the 12 mile zone that surrounds the Chinese man-made islands, an act that Beijing sees as one intended to provoke a response from the PLA.

Six countries- China, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam and Taiwan—all lay claim to islands in the South China Sea.  These countries base their claims on history as well as the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).  UNCLOS gives nations “Exclusive Economic Zone” (EEZ) authority extending out to 200 nautical miles off their coastline.  The country has sole exploitation rights over natural resources in that EEZ. China, however, also lays claim to an area within a “nine-dash line,” which incorporates about 80 percent of the South China Sea and extends far beyond what would be considered a Chinese EEZ.

The United States serves as the regional security guarantor for many of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members. With this role, the U.S. maintains a presence in the South China Sea to maintain the balance of power as well as to ensure the protection of freedom of navigation and trade. The U.S. flies weekly on the edge of the Chinese territory. The American policy towards the South China Sea ensures that the U.S. will, “sail, fly and operate anywhere that international law allows.”



Behind the Mystery Of the '9-Dash Line'

When the Manchus ruled China, it was given the name South Sea - a maritime domain dotted with islets, atolls and lagoons that provided storm shelter for fishermen.

What today's atlases call the South China Sea received its English-language appellation, and its coordinates, under a 1953 document titled Limits of Oceans and Seas published by the Monaco-based International Hydrographic Organization.



The U.S. and China’s Nine-Dash Line: Ending the Ambiguity

For the first time, the United States government has come out publicly with an explicit statement that the so-called “nine-dash line,” which the People's Republic of China (PRC) and Taiwan assert delineates their claims in the South China Sea, is contrary to international law. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Danny Russel, in testimony before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on February 5, said, “Under international law, maritime claims in the South China Sea must be derived from land features. Any use of the 'nine-dash line' by China to claim maritime rights not based on claimed land features would be inconsistent with international law. The international community would welcome China to clarify or adjust its nine-dash line claim to bring it in accordance with the international law of the sea."

The South China Sea encompasses several hundred small islands, reefs, and atolls, almost all uninhabited and uninhabitable, within a 1.4 million square mile area. The PRC inherited from the former Kuomintang government of China the nine-dash line, which draws a line around all of these islands, asserts sovereignty over all of them, and makes ambiguous claims about rights to waters within the line. Under the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), negotiated in the 1970s and 1980s, countries can claim exclusive rights to the fish and mineral resources within Exclusive Economic Zones, which can extend 200 nautical miles from a continental shore line or around islands that can support habitation. There is no provision in the convention granting rights to waters, such as in the South China Sea, without regard to land-based sovereign rights. So it has long been implicit in the U.S. interpretation of UNCLOS that claims to the mineral and fish resources of the South China Sea, unless they are linked to specific inhabitable islands, are invalid. Assistant Secretary Russel’s statement has made that position explicit.

U.S. attention to the South China Sea has increased visibly under the Obama administration. The first manifestation of that attention was a highly publicized statement by Secretary of State Clinton at an international gathering in Hanoi in 2010, in which she laid out principles governing U.S. policy in the South China Sea: respect for freedom of navigation, peaceful resolution of disputes, freedom of commerce, negotiation of a Code of Conduct for dispute resolution and, most relevant here, the view that claims to water could only be based on legitimate land-based claims. Clinton’s statement took a hitherto obscure, below the radar issue and made the South China Sea the subject of accelerated regional diplomacy, numerous analyses by commentators and national security specialists and in some cases sharpened rhetoric by the various claimants. It was welcomed by all of the Southeast Asian claimants (i.e., Vietnam, Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei), though resented by China.



China’s “Nine-dash Line” Claim: US Misunderstands

CHINA’S CONTROVERSIAL “nine-dash line” claim in the South China Sea has triggered long-running misunderstanding in the United States government due to its perennial anxiety and repeated cross-examinations. This misunderstanding basically originates from the different thoughts over territorial and maritime legal matters between China and the West.

This has been reflected in the recent US DoS Paper on China’s Maritime Claims in the South China Sea, put out by the Department of State, which focuses on the coordinates of the dashes, and on the terminologies regarding the maritime laws and Notes Verbales of China, and comes to confusing conclusions.

However, the US government ignored the inconvenient truth that the “dash-line” should not be seen as stricto sensu – that is, in the strict sense – a frontier in the Chinese context of the 1940s. That means it would be pointless to interpret the implications of the line from the perspective of modern international law. Therefore, any research, in the first place, should be confined to the localisation context of China; and the direction of end-point should go down the path of globalisation. These are two inseparable dimensions to understand China’s “dash-line” claim.



Will China's Nine Dashes Ever Turn Into One Line?
 Why does Beijing keep its dashed-line claim to the South China Sea?

As Diplomat readers might be aware, China released a new official map of its territory. As far as Beijing’s provocative moves go, this one was … actually not too bad compared to China’s relatively recent decisions to impose an air defense identification zone (ADIZ) over the East China Sea or move oil rigs into Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ). All Beijing did was publish a new map. This map has caused concerns among China’s neighbors in the South China Sea and even India (but nothing profoundly new in either case). Here on Flashpoints, Harry Kazianis called China’s approach “mapfare.” There is certainly truth in this description. By publishing these maps, Beijing continues to push its version of the facts on the ground, which it then enforces with declarations like the ADIZ, brazen resource exploration, and coast guard patrols (the Philippines became all too aware of this in 2012 in the Scarborough Shoal). One major curiosity with China’s official maps continues to be its audacious nine-dash line claim (now officially ten dashes for those of you keeping count). Why won’t Beijing just convert its dashes into a continuous maritime border?

First, what are the benefits to Beijing of maintaining nine (or ten) dashes instead of a continuous line? Well, in order for there to be any benefit at all, maps would have to matter in the first place. I would argue that they certainly do in the Asia-Pacific. Each of the maritime claimants in the South China Sea comes to the table with their own map of the region. China’s claim to Asia’s cauldron (as Robert Kaplan puts it) is by far the most capacious and substantiated with ten dashes dating back to maps used by the Kuomintang government of the Republic of China in 1947. As others have noted, the primary advantage of these dashes is a degree of calculated ambiguity. According to Beijing, the dashes do not represent an inviolable sovereign claim to the entirety of the area demarcated by the dashes but in reality represent the maximum extent of Chinese control over the region.

This is a subtlety that often goes unappreciated in contemporary debates on China’s claim to the South China Sea. By maintaining its dashes, Beijing actually sees its position on its maritime claims as conciliatory and open somewhat to negotiation with other South China Sea states. One account of a Track II exchange between Western and Chinese scholars in 2009, recounted by Carl Thayer, states that “if nations which made claims for extended continental shelves withdrew such claims, there would be several areas within the dotted line might be amenable to joint development,” according to Chinese scholars.

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The nine-dash line tag
The Case for a Bolder US South China Sea Policy
China's Coming 'Lawfare' and the South China Sea
Why the Next US President Should Pivot to the South China Sea
Revelations on China’s Maritime Modernization
The Challenge to China’s South China Sea Approach
Philippines Fires Back at China’s South China Sea Charges
China Slams Philippines For South China Sea ‘Hypocrisy’
China Blasts ASEAN Head for South China Sea Remarks
Will China Change its South China Sea Approach in 2015?
Is Indonesia Beijing’s Next Target in the South China Sea?
3 Ways China Could Respond to UNCLOS Ruling
Abe Trades Investment for Security Council Seat
Singapore and the Sea of Discontent
Lies, Damned Lies and Maps
Will China's Nine Dashes Ever Turn Into One Line?
The Nine-Dashed Line Isn’t China’s Monroe Doctrine

Indonesia Beefs Up Air Force in South China Sea
China Fires Water Cannons at Philippine Fishermen
China’s “Nine-Dash Line” is Dangerous
Manila's South China Sea Gambit
Beijing's Goal: A New Normal
Why the South China Sea is not a "Sudetenland Moment"
The Korean War Meets The South China Sea


The "eleven-dash line"

China's 1947 map depicting the "eleven-dash line"

Following the defeat of Japan at the end of World War II, the Republic of China re-claimed the entirety of the Paracels, Pratas and Spratly Islands after accepting the Japanese surrender of the islands based on the Cairo and Potsdam Declarations. In November 1946, the Republic of China sent naval ships to take control of these islands after the surrender of Japan.

The nine-dash line was originally an eleven-dash line first shown on a map published by the government of the then Republic of China (1912–49) in December 1947 to justify its claims in the South China Sea. The 1947 map, titled “Map of South China Sea Islands,” originated from an earlier one titled “Map of Chinese Islands in the South China Sea” (Zhongguo nanhai daoyu tu) published by the Republic of China’s Land and Water Maps Inspection Committee in 1935. After the Communist Party of China took over mainland China and formed the People's Republic of China in 1949, the line was adopted and revised to nine as endorsed by Zhou Enlai. After evacuating to Taiwan, the Republic of China has continued its claims, and the nine-dash line remains as the rationale for Taiwan's claims to the Spratly and Paracel Islands.

The nine-dash line has been used by China to show the maximum extent of its claim without indicating how the dashes would be joined if it was continuous and how that would affect the extent of the area claimed by China. The Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia have all officially protested over the use of such a line. Immediately after China submitted a map to the UN including the nine-dash lines territorial claim in the South China Sea on 7 May 2009, the Philippines lodged a diplomatic protest against China for claiming the whole of South China Sea illegally. Vietnam and Malaysia filed their joint protest a day after China submitted its nine-dash line map to the UN. Indonesia also registered its protest, even though it did not have a claim on the South China Sea. In 2013 the PRC extended their claims with a new ten-dash map. The "new" dash, however, is to the east of Taiwan and not in the South China Sea.



3 maps explain China’s real goal in the South China Sea
There’s been a lot of media hype over China’s ongoing military buildup in the South China Sea. But as always, the truth lies beyond the headlines

Chinese action has so far been largely contained to two island groups: the Spratly Islands and the Paracel Islands.

It’s true that China has indeed been building largely on these island groups—constructing harbors, runways, helipads, and radar facilities, and installing missile defense systems.

However, these facilities are defensive in nature. They are meant to extend China’s reach further past its coastline.


South China Sea disputes
Tensions in the South China Sea because of disputes with other claimants like the Philippines and Vietnam are leading to alarming headlines about possible conflict

China insists it is simply doing what all its neighbours are trying to do - but it is doing it at dizzying pace.

The US Department of Defense assesses that as of June 2015, China had reclaimed 17 times more land in 20 months in the South China Sea than all the other claimants combined over the past 40 years.

China's exact intentions remain unclear, but the overall assessment is that Beijing wants to slowly push the US out of the area without causing a conflict.


Sea spats splitting Asia into pro-US, pro-China camps

U.S. President Barack Obama walks away after a group photo shoot at the East Asia Summit in Kuala Lumpur on Nov. 22. © Reuters

TOKYO -- Even as East Asian economies become increasingly integrated, fault lines are spreading throughout the region over competing sovereignty claims in the South China Sea.

The potential for lasting divisions is mounting as countries are forced to side with either the U.S. or China over the maritime disputes.

Politicians and government officials who have attended meetings with U.S. President Barack Obama mostly say he assesses human relationships as if they were something that could be measured on a balance sheet and prioritizes business over friendship. In other words, they say he is a pragmatist through and through.

related:


Why the US is reluctant to take on China
China wants to use resources like these landing craft, pictured here parading through Beijing on Sept. 3. © AP

TOKYO -- Talks over China's island-building projects in the South China Sea at Sunday's East Asia Summit in Malaysia yielded no surprises. The U.S. and Japan expressed concerns about the new islands, and China defended their legitimacy.

Japan, the Philippines and Australia expect the U.S. to maintain a presence in the area and use its naval vessels and other military assets to counterbalance China's claims that its territorial waters extend throughout much of the South China Sea. The U.S., however, is caught in a dilemma. While it wants to quell China's unilateral attempt to change international order, it is reluctant to engage in an all-out battle with China.
There are three reasons:
  • The U.S. military is overstretched. It is engaged in the fight against the Islamic State group in the Middle East. It is also trying to prevent terrorist attacks at home and abroad. And the row with Russia over Ukraine continues.
  • U.S. military forces are weary. Many U.S. troops are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of their tours of duty in Afghanistan and Iraq. The mental condition brings back vivid memories of combat, makes sleeping difficult and changes how sufferers react to those around them and to the outside world. It is incurable. This is apparently holding back U.S. President Barack Obama from sending ground troops to Syria.
  • Finances. The federal government is being forced to spread its dollars thin, and the defense budget is getting squeezed.
related:

China says has shown 'great restraint' in South China Sea
Chinese dredging vessels are purportedly seen in the waters around Mischief Reef in the disputed Spratly Islands in this still image from video taken by a P-8A Poseidon surveillance aircraft provided by the United States Navy May 21, 2015. REUTERS/U.S. NAVY/HANDOUT VIA REUTERS

China has shown "great restraint" in the South China Sea by not seizing islands occupied by other countries even though it could have, a senior Chinese diplomat said on Tuesday ahead of two regional summits where the disputed waterway is likely to be a hot topic. Beijing has overlapping claims with Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Taiwan and Brunei in the South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year.

Reclamation work and the building of three airfields and other facilities on some of China's artificial islands in the Spratly archipelago have alarmed the region and raised concern in Washington that China is extending its military reach deep into maritime Southeast Asia.

But China was the real victim as it had "dozens" of its islands and reefs in the Spratlys illegally occupied by three of the claimants, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin told a news conference in Beijing.

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China calls for direct negotiations on South China Sea disputes
China’s premier has called on South-east Asian nations to set aside their differences as tensions rise over the disputed South China Sea islands, state news agency Xinhua reported late yesterday (Nov 21)

At a meeting with the Association of Southeast Nations (ASEAN) in Kuala Lumpur yesterday, US President Barack Obama called on countries to stop building artificial islands and militarising their claims in the South China Sea.

The United States has sent military ships and war planes by China’s artificial islands in recent weeks to assert its “freedom of navigation” in the sea. Premier Li said some countries outside the region are conducting a high-profile intervention.

“That is in nobody’s interest,” Mr Li said. “Only by expanding our common interests and seeking common ground can we narrow our differences,” Mr Li added. 

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South China Sea issue should be resolved peacefully, says China's Xi Jinping

China has always insisted that the dispute in the South China Sea be resolved peacefully through talks, said Chinese President Xi Jinping on Saturday (Nov 7).

Freedom of passage in the South China Sea has never been a problem and will never be a problem, he added at the Singapore Lecture.

But he reasserted China's territorial claims in the South China Sea: "The South China Sea islands have been Chinese territory since ancient times. It is our duty to uphold sovereignty."

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China says U.S. has gone beyond freedom of navigation to 'test' Beijing

China said on Sunday that the United States is making political provocations with its patrols in the South China Sea, as tensions around the waterways mount.

Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin made the remarks at a briefing during a meeting of Asia-Pacific leaders in Kuala Lumpur. He said the U.S. has gone beyond freedom of navigation to "test" China.

Earlier this month, U.S. B-52 bombers flew near Chinese artificial islands in the area, signalling Washington's determination to challenge Beijing over the disputed sea.

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US boosting naval presence in western Pacific
The USS Ronald Reagan arrived at the U.S. naval base in Yokosuka, Japan, on Thursday, becoming the only forward-deployed aircraft carrier in the U.S. Navy

YOKOSUKA -- The USS Ronald Reagan arrived in Yokosuka, Japan, Thursday, replacing the USS George Washington. With a crew of 5,000 and up to 90 aircraft on board, the largest vessel in the U.S. Navy will be able to reach hot spots such as the South China Sea or North Korea weeks earlier than if it were based on the U.S. west coast.

The move makes the Ronald Reagan the Navy's only forward-deployed aircraft carrier. It will be the fifth carrier to be based in Japan, following the USS Midway, USS Independence, USS Kitty Hawk and George Washington. "We have had a carrier here continuously for 42 years. The critical importance of the carrier being here, both the substance and the symbolism, cannot be overstated," said Ray Mabus, the U.S. secretary of the Navy, who attended the arrival ceremony.

The carrier will be accompanied in Yokosuka by the flagship of the 7th Fleet, USS Blue Ridge, as well as 10 other escort ships equipped with the AEGIS radar system. The Navy plans to forward deploy another two escort ships by 2017, bringing the total presence in Yokosuka to 14 vessels.

related:
US-China friction set to drag on as Beijing flexes military muscle
China military buildup: Think tank warns of threat to US forces in Asia
South China Sea: Is one warship enough?

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China Maintains It’s Shown 'Great Restraint' in South China Sea Dispute

As Washington and its allies criticize Beijing for what they perceive to be aggressive actions in the South China Sea, the Chinese government has pointed out that it has demonstrated "great restraint," even as the Pentagon patrols its territorial waters.

The Obama administration has repeatedly criticized Beijing’s land reclamation efforts in the region, calling them a breach of international law. But on Tuesday, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin reiterated Beijing’s claim to the Spratly archipelago. He also added that Beijing has shown "great restraint" in allowing other countries to illegally occupy its territorial reefs in the region.

"The Chinese government has the right and the ability to recover the islands and reefs illegally occupied by neighboring countries," Liu said during a news conference, according to Reuters. "But we haven’t done this. We have maintained great restraint with the aim to preserve peace and stability in the South China Sea."

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Beijing has shown great restraint in South China Sea, says Chinese envoy

China has shown “great restraint” in the South China Sea by not seizing islands occupied by other countries even though it could have, a senior Chinese diplomat said yesterday ahead of two regional summits where the disputed waterway is likely to be a hot topic.

Chinese Vice-Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin told a news conference in Beijing that China was the real victim as it had had “dozens” of its islands and reefs in the Spratlys illegally occupied by three of the claimants. He did not name the countries, but all claimants (Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Taiwan) except Brunei have military fortifications in the Spratlys.

“The Chinese government has the right and the ability to recover the islands and reefs illegally occupied by neighbouring countries,” Mr Liu said. “But we haven’t done this. We have maintained great restraint with the aim to preserve peace and stability in the South China Sea.”

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U.S. Clears Weapons Sale to Taiwan

In September, Taiwan held military exercises in Hsinchu. Beijing said this week it opposes U.S. $1.83 billion arms sales to Taiwan as ‘an interference’ in China’s internal affairs. Photo: Wally Santana/Associated Press

The U.S. on Wednesday approved its first major sale of weapons to Taiwan in four years and shrugged off criticism that it had held up the proposed $1.83 billion deal to limit expected criticism from China.


The State Department notified Congress of the long-discussed sale, which comes a month ahead of Taiwan’s presidential and legislative elections and includes two decommissioned Navy frigates, air and ground missiles, amphibious vehicles and communications systems.

The Obama administration has come under fire from some U.S. lawmakers over the length of time it has taken to clear the deals after legislation was passed to approve the sale of the frigates a year ago.



Japan's far-flung island defense plan seeks to turn tables on China

Japan is fortifying its far-flung island chain in the East China Sea under an evolving strategy that aims to turn the tables on China’s navy and keep it from ever dominating the Western Pacific Ocean, Japanese military and government sources said.

The United States, believing its Asian allies - and Japan in particular - must help contain growing Chinese military power, has pushed Japan to abandon its decades-old bare-bones home island defense in favor of exerting its military power in Asia.

Tokyo is responding by stringing a line of anti-ship, anti-aircraft missile batteries along 200 islands in the East China Sea stretching 1,400 km from the country’s mainland towards Taiwan.

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U.S. Bomber Flies Over Waters Claimed by China


An American B-52 bomber on a routine mission over the South China Sea unintentionally flew within two nautical miles of an artificial island built by China, senior defense officials said, exacerbating a hotly divisive issue for Washington and Beijing.

Pentagon officials told The Wall Street Journal they are investigating why one of two B-52s on the mission last week flew closer than planned to Cuarteron Reef in the Spratly Islands, an area where China and its neighbors have competing territorial claims. A senior U.S. defense official said that bad weather had contributed to the pilot flying off course and into the area claimed by China.

Beijing filed a formal diplomatic complaint with the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, which prompted the Pentagon to look into the matter.

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US says bombers didn't intend to fly over China-held island

The United States said its two B-52 bombers had no intention of flying over a Chinese-controlled man-made island in the South China Sea, after Beijing accused Washington of "a serious military provocation" in the strategic waters with overlapping claims.

China's Defense Ministry on Saturday accused the U.S. of deliberately raising tensions in the region, where China has been aggressively asserting its claims to virtually all islands, reefs and their surrounding seas. It reiterated that it would do whatever is necessary to protect China's sovereignty.

Pentagon spokesman Mark Wright said that the Dec. 10 mission was not a "freedom of navigation" operation and that there was "no intention of flying within 12 nautical miles of any feature," indicating the mission may have strayed off course.



China urges U.S. to stop provocative actions


China on Saturday urged the United States to stop provocative actions following the flight of two B-52 bombers over the area near China's Nansha islands.

"China takes the incident seriously and has lodged solemn representation with the United States," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said in a press release.

Two U.S. bombers flew into the airspace near an island and reef of the Nansha Islands early on Dec. 10. Pentagon said the flight might have strayed off course due to weather and an investigation had been launched.

related:


China accuses US of serious provocation by flying bombers


China's Defense Ministry said Saturday that the U.S. committed "a serious military provocation" by recently flying two Air Force B-52 bombers over a Chinese-controlled man-made island in the South China Sea, a mission that the U.S. appeared to indicate had strayed off course.

The Defense Ministry accused the U.S. of deliberately raising tensions in the disputed region, where China has been aggressively asserting its claims to virtually all islands, reefs and their surrounding seas. It also reiterated that it would do whatever is necessary to protect China's sovereignty.

As is China's usual practice, the Foreign Ministry took a more diplomatic tone, saying the situation was stable.

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US B-52s ‘stray’ over China-held isles, spark Beijing outrage


In this May 16, 2007 file photo, a B-52 passes overhead at the National Security Forum air demonstration at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. AP


The United States said its two B-52 bombers had no intention of flying over a Chinese-controlled man-made island in the South China Sea, after Beijing accused Washington of “a serious military provocation” in the strategic waters with overlapping claims.

China’s Defense Ministry accused the U.S. of deliberately raising tensions in the region, where China has been aggressively asserting its claims to virtually all islands, reefs and their surrounding seas. It reiterated that it would do whatever is necessary to protect China’s sovereignty.

Pentagon spokesman Mark Wright said that the Dec. 10 mission was not a “freedom of navigation” operation and that there was “no intention of flying within 12 nautical miles of any feature,” indicating the mission may have strayed off course.

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Full Coverage:



US presence in Asia-Pacific is essential for regional stability

Singapore’s Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen has urged the US to show what he calls “clear and consistent signals” that it intends to remain fully engaged in the Asia-Pacific region.

Dr Ng was speaking at the end of his visit to Washington, where he signed an enhanced Defence Cooperation Agreement with US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter.

Dr Ng’s day began on Capitol Hill, where he held meetings with members of the Congressional Singapore Caucus.

related:
US agrees spy plane deployment in Singapore amid China tensions
US surveillance plane deployed to Singapore
Another US patrol in South China Sea unlikely this year: Officials
US Navy commander warns of possible South China Sea arms race


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Dr Ng: Continued US Presence in the Asia-Pacific is Vital for Regional Stability
Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen giving a speech at an event organised by the Center for a New American Security at The Willard InterContinental Hotel

Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen delivered a speech at an event organised by the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) earlier today (Singapore time).

Speaking at the event facilitated by co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of the CNAS Michèle Flournoy, Dr Ng highlighted that amidst a changing regional landscape, the US' continued presence in the Asia-Pacific was essential in ensuring continued peace and progress in the region. He explained, "Singapore has consistently believed that the US, whose presence in the Asia-Pacific is a force for regional peace and stability, plays a critical role in the security architecture of the region", and it is because of this belief that "following the closure of Clark Air Base and Subic Bay in the Philippines, Singapore signed the 1990 Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the US, which facilitated the US' access to our air bases and naval bases."

Dr Ng also highlighted that greater strategic trust among stakeholders in the Asia-Pacific was vital in ensuring the region's continued peace and stability and underscored the need to promote greater dialogue and practical cooperation. He noted, "As critical as the US' continued presence in the Asia-Pacific is, the US alone cannot ensure continued peace and stability. To do so, we need to build greater strategic trust among all stakeholders in the Asia-Pacific… Over the past two decades, regional stakeholders have institutionalised new platforms such as the ADMM-Plus, the East Asia Summit and the ASEAN Regional Forum…Our defence establishments are coming together to deal with non-traditional security threats." Dr Ng cited the Malacca Straits Patrols, Singapore's Information Fusion Centre, and the upcoming ADMM-Plus Maritime Security and Counter-Terrorism exercise as good examples of regional practical cooperation.

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U.S. atlas published in 1994 shows South China Sea islands part of Chinese territory
The 1994 revised edition of the Illustrated Atlas of The World, published by the Chicago-based Rand McNally, clearly shows that Huangyan Dao, Nansha Islands and Xisha Islands fall under China's jurisdiction, according to Chia-Chi Tsui, a retired Chinese-American professor, July 8, 2016. (Xinhua/Huang Hexun)

An atlas published in 1994 by a renowned U.S. map publisher clearly illustrated that Huangyan Dao and other key islands involved in the South China Sea dispute are part of China's territory.

The 1994 revised edition of the Illustrated Atlas of The World, published by the Chicago-based Rand McNally, clearly shows that Huangyan Dao, Nansha Islands and Xisha Islands fall under China's jurisdiction, Chia-Chi Tsui, a retired Chinese-American professor, told Xinhua on Friday.

The Illustrated Atlas of The World is published by one of the most recognized names in American map publishing. The atlas shows clearly that Huangyan Dao is out of the Philippine borderline as the island, which the Philippines calls Scarborough Shoal, is located to the west of the 118 degrees east longitude -- the western limit of Philippine territory, said Tsui, owner of the atlas.

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Territorial Disputes: Malignant and Benign

Some things are worth fighting for. What about a few desert islands occupied mainly by birds, goats and moles? China and Japan seem to think so, the rest of the world is alarmed and a look at other territorial disputes around the globe shows that stranger things have happened. There are about 60 such conflicts simmering worldwide. Most will bubble along, unresolved but harmless, 400 years after the Peace of Westphalia established the notion of national sovereignty. Others are more dangerous.

The Situation - China claims more than 80 percent of the South China Sea, where it has constructed artificial islands and built up its military presence. Five others — Vietnam, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia and Taiwan — claim parts of the same maritime area, a thriving fishing zone through which more than $5 trillion of trade passes each year. In a case brought by the Philippines, an international tribunal in The Hague ruled against China in July, saying it had no historic rights to the resources within a dashed line drawn on a 1940s map that had formed the basis of its claims. While the court said the ruling was binding, China said the tribunal has no jurisdiction. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte called for restraint and in October held talks with China on contested territory.

The U.S., the longtime guarantor of freedom of navigation in the waters, has stepped up support for Southeast Asian maritime law enforcement agencies and Indonesia has accused Chinese fishing boats of increasingly encroaching into its waters. One thousand miles to the northeast, in the East China Sea, China is in dispute with Japan over century-old claims to a separate set of islands — called Senkaku in Japanese and Diaoyu in Chinese — that have been administered by Japan since 1972. U.S. President Barack Obama in 2014 said a U.S.-Japan security treaty applies to the islands, meaning the U.S. military could act if Japanese waters were violated. Meantime, Donald Trump's election as U.S. president adds a new element of uncertainty. Trump has accused the Chinese of building a military fortress in the South China Sea and of doing so “at will because they have no respect for our president and they have no respect for our country.” China is also locked in a disagreement with India over the two countries’ land border.


Full Coverage:
The Nine-Dashed Line
The Nine-Dash Line in the South China Sea - JStor
Nine-Dashed Line | The Diplomat
The Nine Dash Line and Its Basis in International
China's “Nine-dash Line” Claim: US Misunderstands
Is the Nine-Dash Line in the South China Sea Legal
How The Eleven-Dash Line Became a Nine-Dash Line, And
Nine-Dashed Line | The Diplomat
What's China's basis of the 9-dash line? - Quora
Call for China to tweak 'nine-dash line' - FT.com
Philippines to submit 300-year-old map to UN to debunk
The US and China's Nine-Dash Line - Brookings Institution
Beijing's Nine Dash Line - Wall Street Journal
China's Claims in the South China Sea – The Short Answer
No nation recognizes China 9-dash line: Philippines - ABS
Why US analysis of China's nine-dash line is flawed | East Asia Forum
China's nine-dash line still infringes international law
The whole nine dashes and why the Philippines' arbitration case
South China Sea disputes: ASEAN and China
Analysis: China's nine-dashed line in South China Sea
South China Sea | Lowy Institute
China-made globes have nine-dash line | Headlines, News
The South China Sea: Drawing the Nine Dash Line
US admiral says China's 9-dash line not valid | Inquirer
On China's 9-Dashed Line and Why the Arbitrational Tribunal


ANCIENT CHINESE MAPS SHOWS XISHA (PARACELS),  ZHONGSHA (MACCLESFIELDS), AND NANSHA (SPRATLYS) WERE NOT PART OF CHINA