China: China has released a new official map which includes a vast portion of the hotly contested South China Sea. In addition to China's land borders, the newly released map has been re-designed to emphasise the disputed waters much more prominently than previous maps. The map, which went on sale starting this week, was designed by the government-approved Hunan Map Press, and was designed to fully illustrate what China has always claimed in previous versions.
China claims sovereignty over 90% of the area, much to the dismay of nearby governments like the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei, Vietnam and Taiwan, which also lay claim to parts of the South China Sea. (The map also shows Taiwan as part of China, as the government has always claimed.) In order to include the claims made by China’s self-prescribed nine-dash line, a historical demarcation of territories in the South China Sea, it ends up looking more like a map of Southeast Asia than just a map of China. The newly issued map probably will enrage China’s neighbors, many of which are engaged in volatile territorial disputes in the resource-rich area.