Vietnam, China and Malaysia Dispute Sovereignty Claims in South China Sea

Posted by Reading Time: < 1 minute

May 15 – Vietnam and Malaysia have submitted a joint petition disputing China’s territorial boundary claim in the South China Sea.

Beijing has rebuked the argument as invalid and illegal and asked the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) not to review the submission. Vietnam and Malaysia released the petition one week prior to the May 13 deadline determined by the United Nations for countries to claim extended continental shelves.

A Chinese spokesperson told Xinhua that with opposition from China, the CLCS will not consider the joint submission in line with the Rules of Procedure. China is claiming the outer limits of the continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles that included parts of the East China Sea.

“China has indisputable sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over South China Sea islands and their adjacent waters,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Ma Zhaoxu told China Daily.

The South China Sea is a strategic area for Beijing because 80 percent of its imported crude oil is transported through that route,  in addition to having promising reserves of natural gas.