China’s Supreme Court extends its jurisdiction to cover all seas under its control, including South China Sea


In this July 8 photo released by the Xinhua News Agency, Chinese missile frigate Yuncheng launches an anti-ship missile during a military exercise in the South China Sea. | AP File Photo
BEIJING: China’s Supreme Court has extended its maritime jurisdiction to cover all seas under the country’s ‘sovereign control’, as Beijing firmed up its hold over the disputed South China Sea.

China will resolutely safeguard maritime rights and interests, a work report of the Supreme People’s Court (SPC) submitted to the country’s legislature the National People’s Congress (NPC) today said.

China’s maritime jurisdiction extends to cover all jurisdictional seas, a regulation contributed to China’s strategy of becoming a major maritime power, Supreme Court Chief Justice Zhou Qiang said in his report, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Chinese citizens or foreigners will be pursued for criminal liability if they engage in illegal hunting or fishing or killing endangered wildlife in China’s jurisdictional seas, Zhou’s report said.

China asserts sovereign claims over almost all of the disputed South China Sea. The Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan have counter claims over the area.