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U.S. warship sails near island claimed by China in S. China Sea

U.S. warship sails near island claimed by China in S. China Sea

A U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer, USS Curtis Wilbur, sailed within 12 nautical miles of Triton Island claimed by China in the South China Sea.  According to Pentagon it was designed to challenge efforts of the three claimants, viz., China, Taiwan and Vietnam, to restrict freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.

Earlier, on 27th October, 2015, US destroyer USS Lassen navigated within 12 nautical miles of the emerging land masses in the Spratly Islands as the first in a series of “Freedom of Navigation Operation

Also, on 29th January, 2016, Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou visited the disputed Itu Aba or Taiping Island in the South China Sea, and defended his visit to the disputed island despite criticism from the United States and protests from the other claimants as tensions swirl in the region.

India too has interest in South China Sea. ONGC has exploration right given by Vietnam in the region. India wants free passage in South China Sea according to UNCLOS & other international water authorities in the international maritime zones.

Disputed islands & territory in South China Sea

Territorial disputes in the South China Sea involve both island and maritime claims among China (PROC), Taiwan (ROC) and most of the ASEAN member countries.

  1. Nine- dash linearea claimed by the Republic of China and later by People’s Republic of China which covers most of the South China Sea and overlaps Exclusive Economic Zone claims of Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
  2. Maritime boundary along the Vietnamese coast between Brunei, Cambodia, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
  3. Maritime boundary north of Borneobetween Brunei, China, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
  4. Paracels Islands, Pratas Islands, Scarborough Shoal & Spratly Islands among Brunei, China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
  5. Maritime boundary in the waters north of the Natunabetween Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
  6. Maritime boundary in the Luzon Straitbetween the China, the Philippines, and Taiwan.
  7. Maritime boundary and islands in the Pedra Branca  between Singapore and Malaysia.
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