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ADIZ Update: Enforcement in the East China Sea, Prospects for the South China Sea, and Implications for the United States

Research Report by Michael Pilger

U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission 

On November 23, 2013, China established an air defense identification zone (ADIZ)* in the East China Sea (see Figure 1). China’s ADIZ encompasses the Senkaku Islands, which Japan administers but over which both countries claim sovereignty. On the day of the announcement, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said China’s ADIZ “constitutes an attempt to change the status quo in the East China Sea.” Within days, military aircraft from the United States, Japan, and South Korea flew through China’s ADIZ without complying with China’s ADIZ regulations. Since late 2013, international tensions over China’s ADIZ have diminished, but the prospect of a new Chinese ADIZ in the South China Sea warrants further study of China’s operations in its East China Sea ADIZ to date. This report therefore seeks to assess the extent to which China has enforced† its ADIZ in the East China Sea, and to consider the potential conditions and implications of a Chinese ADIZ in the South China Sea.

Read the full report at Michael Pilger_ ADIZ update


Figure 1: China’s ADIZ and Claimed Exclusive Economic Zone* in the East China Sea. Source: Adapted from BBC, “Viewpoints: China Air Zone Tensions,” November 28, 2013. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia- 25116119.

Source: U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission. 


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