From the window of a navy P-8A Poseidon military plane, the South China ocean appearance calm. however across this large, blue expanse, a heated struggle for influence is going down. From the window of a navy P-8A Poseidon military plane, the South China ocean appearance calm. however across this large, blue expanse, a heated struggle for influence is going down.
China has been building military installations on rescued shoals and sandbars to strengthen its territorial claims within the ocean, in defiance people efforts to keep up free passage.
CNN joined the navy for a flyover of the controversial Spratly island chain, obtaining a better check up on a neighborhood that some say can be consecutive flashpoint for world conflict.
Controversy over the South China ocean has been building for many years.At issue square measure these reefs and shoals that structure the Spratly and Paracel island chains.
The South China ocean may be a confusing internet of territorial claims. a minimum of six governments say they’re the rightful owner of elements of the Spratlys and also the Paracels.
The Chinese government claims a huge space below what’s referred to as the “nine-dash line.” Beijing maintains the realm has been below Chinese rule since “ancient times” — several disagree.
The Philippines government conjointly claims the bulk of the Spratly chain, that lies off their shores. But so far, President Rodrigo Duterte has needed hotter relations with China, instead of conflict.
Vietnam claims the Paracel chain and elements of the Spratlys, locution they fall into Hanoi’s management. The Chinese government has repeatedly blocked Hanoi’s makes an attempt to sought for oil within what each think their territory.
Establishing a presence within the South China ocean is regarding quite status and power.
Several claimants are attempting to require management of fishing rights and probably far more valuable, however on trial, oil and gas reserves deep to a lower place the water. The Chinese government maintains that the overwhelming majority of any resources within the South China ocean belong to Beijing, and has noncontinuous makes an attempt by Vietnam to explore its own waters off its shores.
Controlling access to the South China ocean would conjointly provide the holder power over one among the world’s most respected mercantilism routes, conferring vast influence to whichever country dominates its waters. the ocean hosts simple fraction of worldwide shipping, price quite $3 trillion in 2016, per the middle for Strategic & International Studies’ (CSIS) China Power Project. That enclosed $874 billion of Chinese exports, likewise as $125 billion in North American nation imports to the region.