The Challenges in the South China Sea of Maintaining Security over the Spratly Islands

The Challenges in the South China Sea of Maintaining Security over the Spratly Islands

In contemporary East Asia, the endeavor of security is a significant challenge. The treaty of Westphalia was used to guide the safety of South East Asia (Zhang, 2018). For centuries, East Asia had remained a stateless country. However, there was a turn of events when European explorers reached the shores of East Asia. The Explorers led to a new international contact which led to colonization by Europeans, and later by the Japanese military (Odgaard, 2017). The event of colonization affected the evolution of interstate relations attached to East Asia.

The strategic importance accorded to East Asia ocean waters has been on the rise over time. There are three core factors that facilitate the strategic value of East Asia ocean waters (Gagliano, 2018). Firstly, the aspect that maritime area offers easy access to marine energy resources. Secondly, East Asia ocean waters are home to the territorial conflict between South and East China (Koda, 2016). Thirdly, East Asia ocean water is a strategic point for building up a super naval military base. Over time, China has acted as the leading party in setting the tone of issues affecting East Asia ocean waters (Curtis, 2016). This is because it is particularly interested in beefing up its naval power.

In conclusion, the challenges facing South Asia ocean waters in maintaining security, especially over the Spratly islands are likely to continue increasing. It is recommendable for the international community to intervene before the matter at hand erupts into a bloody war (Wu, 2016). For instance, the UN should intervene and call all involved parties to a dialogue table.





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Odgaard, L. (2017). Maritime security between China and Southeast Asia: conflict and cooperation in the making of regional order. Routledge.

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Zhang, F. (2018). Chinese thinking on the South China Sea and the future of regional security. In US-China Competition and the South China Sea Disputes (pp. 64-80). Routledge.