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China draws new map; adds gasoline to the fire

September 18, 2013

In 2009, China submitted a map to the United Nations in which it claimed sovereignty over nearly the entire South China Sea, trampling on what international law recognizes as the legitimate sovereignty claims of several of her neighbors.  Over the years, China has maintained this claim through informal manners.

9 dash map

China has recently produced a new, 10 dash map which fully encompasses the island of Taiwan and comes very close to the southernmost territorial waters of Japan.   As the Australian Strategic Policy Institute points out, this is certainly a very considered move by the Chinese, and the tenth line might be more than a mere dash – it could be a virtual arrow, pointing toward China’s desire to also lay claim to the East China Sea and Japan’s own Senkaku Islands.

10dashmap

This is a rather provocative move, coming as does in the midst of the multi-nation Indo-Pacific naval arms race.

 

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