China Demands Declaration from Foreign Ships Before Entering “Its Waters”

China announced on Sunday new maritime rules demanding foreign vessels to report to Chinese maritime authorities before entering Chinese waters would take effect on September 1. 

China’s Maritime Safety Administration said that under the new maritime laws, operators of submersibles, nuclear vessels, ships carrying radioactive materials, and ships carrying bulk oil, chemicals, liquified gas, and other toxic and harmful substances must report their detailed information upon entering its territorial seas. 

The Chinese maritime authorities added that foreign vessels with faulty automatic identification systems must report every two hours until it leaves the territorial sea. 

While Chinese experts viewed the rollout of the new maritime laws as a sign of China’s determination to safeguard national security, others believed it would increase tensions if China strictly enforces them in the disputed South China Sea and the Taiwan Straits.

On Friday, the Chinese Defense Ministry protested against the crossing of two US navy ships through the Taiwan Strait. 

China has claimed sovereignty over almost all of the South China Sea islands and their adjacent waters. 

China has also built military bases on artificial islands in the regions claimed by other countries like Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan, and Vietnam. 

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