Chinese ambitions in the East China Sea

Global Risk Insights
Date: November 24, 2019
By: Alexander Viehmeier , 

A few weeks ago, the Twitter account of the Chinese state-run newspaper ‘People’s Daily’ published a video showing Chinese students creating the shape of China in a choreography. The inclusion of the so-called nine-dash line and a few islands to the northeast of Taiwan raises questions about Beijing’s maritime ambitions again. 

Currently, China claims vast territories of South East Asia, spanning virtually the entire South China Sea. Beijing symbolises these claims with a nine-dash line. Despite the ruling from the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, rendering the Chinese claims null and void, China continues to advertise the claimed areas as their rightful land.  The video of Chinese students creating the shape of the national territory, including regions claimed within the nine-dash-line, reiterates this intention.  

The video elicited strong reactions about the scope of the nine-dash line and the unspecified islands northeast of Taiwan that are included. These patches of lands could be the Japanese Okinawa Islands. However, they could also symbolise the highly contested Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands.

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