Paracels, Spratlys, and Zhongsha Islands Authority

How a non-existent island became China's southernmost territory

An aerial view of the city of Sansha on an island in the disputed Paracel chain. Photo: AFP

Where is the "southernmost point of Chinese territory"? It's a controversial question and the least controversial answer might be Hainan Island . More controversial options would be the Paracel (Xisha) islands or the Spratlys (Nansha).

Saturday, 9 February, 2013, 6:37am 19 comments

US regional presence acts as a needed counterweight to China

Fresh from his Asia tour, American deputy defence secretary Ashton Carter recently outlined at the Asia Society in New York the contours of the US "rebalance strategy" in the Asia-Pacific region.

15 Aug 2012 - 1:51am

Birth of Sansha city signals death of diplomacy in South China Sea dispute

Was it Deng Xiaoping who said that possession is nine-tenths of the law? No matter. China is actively applying this simple precept in the South China Sea, a disputed region where it knows that boots on the ground count for a lot more than expressions of ownership voiced at some meeting in a faraway capital.

15 Aug 2012 - 10:42pm

PLA denies adopting tough approach

The Chinese military denies it has adopted a tough approach in handling territorial disputes over the South China Sea, saying its recent moves in the disputed waters were intended to safeguard national interests.

15 Aug 2012 - 10:42pm

Balancing act for Sansha's new leader

The first leader of Sansha, the city that China intends to oversee its sovereignty in the South China Sea, is seen as a man who knows how to balance the island's environmental needs with its development.

26 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Who said it?

It's a great honour to be the first mayor of Sansha, and a new mission, challenge and test for me

Xiao Jie, mayor and party secretary of the city to oversee disputed South China Sea islands

Over the past six months, my health has been deteriorating and I easily feel tired

PTU president Fung Wai-wah, announcing his withdrawal from the Legco election

26 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

People's congress on way for new city of Sansha

A preparatoty committee was established yesterday to set up a local people's congress in a new Chinese city that will oversee disputed regions in the South China Sea.

The prefecture-level city of Sansha was established on June 21 in a move to claim sovereignty over the disputed Spratly and Paracel islands, the Macclesfield Bank undersea atoll and surrounding waters.

18 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Reshuffle linked to islands dispute

The People's Liberation Army has announced major reshuffles within the military units in Hainan province that oversee disputed South China Sea islets.

12 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

US urges calm in South China Sea

The United States has called on nations involved in sovereignty disputes in the South China Sea to refrain from any provocative action ahead of an Asean foreign ministers meeting.

8 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Beijing steps up patrols ahead of Asean meeting

With a key Asean meeting looming, state media have stepped up their coverage of China's commitment to protect its claim to the disputed Spratly Islands in the South China Sea. They report increased patrols by surveillance vessels that are 'collecting evidence' of infringement by other claimants to the islands.

5 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Beijing increases the pressure

China turned up the heat on rival claimants to the Spratly and Paracel islands yesterday, with the defence ministry saying it was considering setting up a military command unit in the disputed waters.

29 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

New city to run disputed island chains

China has approved a plan to establish a new city to administer three disputed island chains in the South China Sea, in its latest attempt to step up its territorial claims in the region.

22 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

Vietnam fails to bring China into Paracels talks

Vietnam appears to have failed in its latest bid to convince China to open talks on their long-simmering territorial dispute over the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea.

24 Aug 2011 - 12:00am

Plan to designate islands a city denied

Sino-Vietnamese row takes a new turn

The diplomatic row with Vietnam over the designation of disputed islands at China's southern tip as a city took another turn yesterday when a Hainan official denied such a plan was on the agenda.

19 Dec 2007 - 12:00am