News / Asia

China Shores up Territorial Claims

China Shores up Territorial Claimsi
X
December 21, 2012
China has long had territorial maritime disputes with its Asian neighbors, but over the past year tensions over its claims in the East and South China Sea have seen a dramatic uptick. VOA's William Ide looks at how Beijing is using everything from establishing a new city in the South China Sea to weather reports to take a more assertive stance.
TEXT SIZE - +
William Ide
China has long had territorial maritime disputes with its Asian neighbors, but over the past year tensions over its claims in the East and South China Sea have seen a dramatic uptick. Beijing is using everything from establishing a new city in the South China Sea to weather reports to take a more assertive stance.
 
As a rising maritime power, China is using a wide range of measures to shore up its territorial claims.
 
In July, Beijing established a new city and military garrison on the island of Sansha, extending its reach further into the South China Sea. Next month, police on Hainan island will begin to search and board foreign ships that enter its claimed territory.
 
Some say this will just add to already growing tensions. But Zhang Jie, an Asia Pacific security analyst says it is more about defending China’s rights than taking a more aggressive stance.

“There has always been a lack of clear provisions to implement or legal basis on matters of the administrative management sea in China, so for example in Xisha or in Zhongsha if the Philippines or Vietnam infringes on the rights of fishermen or if they drill for oil or gas, then what kind of measures should China take? Well, now we have provisions to regulate that,” Zhang explained.
 
When a dispute with Japan over islands in the East China Sea flared in September, people took to the streets and the government launched measures to assert its sovereignty, ranging from submitting its oceanic claims to the United Nations to broadcasting the weather for the uninhabited islands.
 
This tougher approach is in sharp contrast to China’s posture in the 1990s, when it was more willing to negotiate and make concessions, says China security analyst Bonnie Glaser. "I think that today Beijing is using sticks in addition to carrots, teaching lessons to those neighbors that misbehave and feel that they can tolerate a degree of tensions and friction with their neighbors for a period of time," Glaser stated.
 
This approach resonates with the public in China and many are finding ways to show their support for its territorial claims.
 
“This says Protect and Defend the Diaoyu Islands, Do Not Give up Even One Inch of Land”  If the country needs me to become a soldier then I would go,” said Xu.
 
“As the public’s knowledge increases and incomes grow, people are becoming more patriotic and care more about the country's affairs. But this at times can link up with dissatisfaction the public may have about other social and political issues and that can lead to increased criticism and pressure toward the government,” Zhang said.
 
Analysts say that if China does not handle its territorial disputes well, it not only could face trouble in the region but at home as well.

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid