Spratly Islands

(redirected from Spratlys)
Also found in: Dictionary.

Spratly Islands,

group of about 100 low islands and coral reefs in the central South China Sea, intersecting busy shipping lanes. The whole group is claimed by China, Taiwan, and Vietnam, and parts are claimed by Malaysia and the Philippines. Brunei has established (1984) an exclusive economic zone encompassing Louisa Reef, but it has not claimed the islet. Various islands, valued primarily for the petroleum and gas potential of the surrounding waters and to a lesser degree for their fishing grounds, are occupied by their claimants. China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam all have forces there. There have been many disputes and some fighting, most notably between Chinese and Vietnamese vessels in 1988 and 1992, and the Spratlys remain a source of tension among the claimants. A 2002 agreement between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and China called for all claimants to avoid activities that would heighten tensions over the islands, but China, Taiwan, and other claimants have nonetheless improved a number of the islands and reefs so that they can support airstrips and other facilities. A 2016 ruling under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea in a case that was initiated by the Philippines against China rejected China's main basis for its claim to the islands, and judged that none of the islands met the criteria required to entitle any claimant to an exclusive economic zone.
Mentioned in ?
References in periodicals archive ?
Too bad, that could have finally given him transport to the Spratlys.
All but Brunei have troops deployed in the Spratlys, with China now clearly having an upper hand as it has established three major air and naval bases on three of the seven artificial islands it has created in the region.
Moreover, Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2016 openly assured then US President Barack Obama that Beijing 'would not militarize its reclaimed islands in the Spratlys.
Villanueva prodded the Duterte administration to reassert the Philippines's rightful claim over the West Philippine Sea 'amid ongoing militarization' of China-built artificial islands in the Spratlys archipelago.
He should have renamed it China Rise, if all that he was going to do was offer it to China on a silver platter, after also surrendering the Spratlys to them.
It can also be argued that the criteria the judges used to determine the maritime entitlements of the Spratlys may also be applied to the Paracels.
In the east, China claimed Spratlys and Paracels Islands and sent troops to Itu Aba Island where they erected sovereignty markers and named it Taiping Islands.
amp;nbsp;The two airports, which are on Mischief Reef and Subi Reef, will reportedly help with personal transfers to the Spratlys.
Sovereignty over the island is being challenged by China, which claims Spratlys in whole together with about a third of the entire South China Sea territory.
Navy last went within 12 miles of Chinese-claimed territory in the Spratlys in 2012.
Vietnam, the Philippines and Malaysia have asserted their own claims in the area by stationing troops in the Spratlys and building airstrips there from the 1970s onwards.
Last month, the Philippines protested the presence of a Chinese warship, two surveillance vessels and fishing boats off a shoal occupied by Filipino troops in the Spratlys in the latest territorial squabble between the two Asian countries.