South China Sea Case Study

9616 Words39 Pages
THIRD CHAPTER South China Sea disputes between Vietnam and China Introduction The South China Sea disputes are one of the most complex diplomatic dilemmas of the contemporary Asian international relations involving seven littoral states. The rival states have fussed over territorial sovereignty for a long time but a recent upsurge in tension has sparked concerns that the area is becoming a flashpoint with global consequences. Among the contestants, the most important are Vietnam and China who have the most expensive claims covering the whole of Spratly and Paracel Islands. Although both are communist and they have close historical, cultural, and religious connections dating back to nearly two millennia, overlapping claims over sovereignty…show more content…
While the Paracel Islands are the object of bilateral disputes between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Vietnam, the claims to the Spratly Islands are contested either entirely or in part by six parties, including Brunei, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Philippine, and Vietnam. Except for Brunei, all the claimants have more or less a physical military presence in the South China Sea. Among the claimants, Vietnam ranks first by occupying 25 islands and reefs, 12 reefs and shoals are currently under the PRC, Philippine occupies 8, Malaysia controls 5 in Spratly. Taiwan has been occupying only one island called Itu-Aba but this is the largest island and the one which possesses the most facilities among the occupied…show more content…
According to UNCLOS, Article 121 (1), an “island” is “a Hence, for Spratly the condition of having “above water at high tide” is potentially problematic. Many of the features counted among the Spratly Islands are in fact really low tide elevations or submerged banks. Only 48 are known to rise above high tide to form uniformly small, and in most cases tiny, islands or rocks. The biggest insular feature among the Spratlys, Itu Aba Island, is a mere 1.4 kilometres long and 370 meters wide with an area of approximately 50 hectares, while Spratly Island itself has a roughly isosceles triangle shape, the base measuring 750 meters with the apex 350 meters distant and an area of around 1.3 hectares. All the islands are scattered over vast area of around 240,000 square

More about South China Sea Case Study

Open Document