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U-Shaped Line and Maritime Delimitation

China’s “Nine-Dash Line” is Dangerous

South China Sea

China’s “Nine-Dash Line” is Dangerous

Zachary Keck

The Diplomat

The below paragraphs are extracted from the full article at http://thediplomat.com/2014/02/chinas-nine-dash-line-is-dangerous/

The principle behind China’s “nine-dash line” threatens the stability of far more than the South China Sea.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

China’s claim to 90 percent of the South China Sea is rooted primarily in the notion that past Chinese rulers have at times maintained sovereignty over the various islands and reefs in the waters. As a senior Chinese diplomat reportedly explained to U.S. officials back in 2008, “The dotted line of the South China Sea indicates the sovereignty of China over the islands in the South China Sea since ancient times.”

Allowing China to establish the principle that states can claim territory based on what their country has at times controlled would be disastrous for the simple reason that borders have been fluid throughout history. As a result, there…

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