Everything you need to know about the South China Sea conflict – in under five minutes


1. Whose South China Sea is it, anyway?

China’s claim to the South China Sea is based in history, dating back to records from the Xia and Han dynasties. China delineates its claims via the nine-dash line, which Chiang Kai Shek advanced in 1947. During China’s republican era, China surveyed, mapped and named 291 islands and reefs in the region.

The United States contends that the South China Sea is international water, and sovereignty in the area should be determined by the United Nations Convention on Laws of the Sea (UNCLOS). UNCLOS states that countries can’t claim sovereignty over any land masses that are submerged at high tide, or that were previously submerged but have been raised above high tide level by construction.


Read more: http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2015/06/09/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-south-china-sea-conflict-in-under-five-minutes/