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We want to keep our islands in South China Sea

Written by Ariel

We want to keep our islands in South China Sea, says Dr Mahathir

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Pulau Layang-Layang is one of the islands in the South China Sea occupied by Malaysia. There is an airstrip, a navy station and a resort on the island, which was developed from a reef. – pic from www.layanglayang.com, June 20, 2018. PRIME Mininster Dr Mahathir Mohamad has said that Malaysia wants to keep occupying at least five islands in the disputed South China Sea, including the Spratly Islands. In an interview with Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post (SCMP), Dr Mahathir said that Malaysia has been occupying these islands for many years, and hopes to continue doing so. “There are certain rocks which we have developed into islands. And we hope that we will stay on those islands, because it is a part of our keeping the sea safe from pirates and others,” he was quoted as saying. “So we want to retain, of course, about four or five islands that we have occupied. The rest – whoever thinks it is theirs, they can occupy,” said Dr Mahathir. “But it is something if China claims the South China Sea is theirs, but those islands have always been regarded as ours for a long time. So we want to retain them.” Beijing is laying claim to the entire South China Sea, putting it in conflict with Malaysia, Taiwan, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Brunei – all of whom claim to have a stake in the resource-rich and strategic sea lane. China’s heavy military presence at the South China Sea, along with the addition of US warships, has heightened tensions in the disputed area. Dr Mahathir said he believes keeping warships out of the disputed waterway is key to maintaining peace. He said that instead of warships, the waters should be “patrolled by small boats” that would be “equipped to deal with pirates, not to fight another war”. “I think there should not be too many warships. Warships create tension,” said the 92-year-old. “Someday, somebody might make some mistakes and ther…

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  • China thinks, if she owns a few land features in the sea, she also owns the entire sea. That was why there come the dashed lines. If this rationale is reasonable, then the US may use it to claim ownership of the Pacific Ocean, and the Philippines may use it too, to claim ownership of the South China Sea since the Philippines owns so many big islands in the SCS.

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