BienDong.Net

Emergence of South China Sea as a Flash Point

Notwithstanding some moves to manage the South China Sea disputes by having a Code of Conduct, the current developments, which are raising the level of tension among the different claimants, do not generate optimism for any positive outcome. An objective examination of the recent activities would suggest that situation is fast moving in the direction of a limited conflict, which would have the potentials of taking the shape of a large conflict with outside powers being drawn into the conflict.

At the outset it is important to state that India has a great stake in the South China Sea. Our entire trade with China, Japan, Vietnam, Philippines Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei and 55% of trade with US passes through the South China Sea.

CHINA’S “U-SHAPED LINE” CLAIM IN THE EAST SEA (BIEN DONG) - FORMATION HISTORY AND LEGAL ARGUMENTS

1. Foreword

The East Sea dispute is one of the most complex territorial disputes in the world. The complexity of the East Sea dispute comes from complicated sovereignty claims of many countries for overlapping areas. Moreover, it is not only a dispute on the aspects of international law, on maritime border and sea territory but also involves strategic interests, especially the control of maritime transport routes and the exploitation of marine resources, including oil and gas.

SYSTEM OF INTERNATIONAL DISPUTES IN EAST SEA (BIEN DONG): REAL SITUATION AND CHARACTERISTICS

The international disputes in the East Sea have drawn the attention of Vietnamese and foreign scholars since the second half of the 1980s in the 20th century, especially after China seized seven underwater reefs in the Truong Sa archipelago (Spratly) in March 1998. Their studies follow three directions:

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