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In pictures: Asian islands row
Competing claims over east Asian islands - most involving China - are exacerbating tensions in the region.
Last Modified: 25 Sep 2012 14:09

In recent months, territory disputes have erupted between a slew of nations over small islands in the South China Sea, East China Sea, and Sea of Japan. Some of these islands, such as the Spratly and Paracel Islands, are uninhabited, but control over them could give the owner access to huge deposits of oil and gas.

The South China Sea - one of the world's major shipping lanes - is also regarded as one of the major sources of future mineral wealth. Though estimates vary, Bloomberg reported the region may have as much oil as Saudi Arabia.

China claims sovereignty over almost all of the massive sea, which covers an area of about 3.5 million square kilometres. This has raised objections from countries including Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Brunei.

Further north, a number of disputes rage over small islands in the Sea of Japan and East China Sea. China and Japan both claim the Senkaku Islands (known as Diaoyu Islands in Chinese), while South Korea and Japan squabble over the Liancourt Rocks.

The competing disputes over these islands are nothing new - China's territorial claims go back to centuries - but the recent rise in tensions threaten regional stability and with potential global consequences. 



POOL/REUTERS
Countries have fought over territory in the South China Sea for centuries, but a recent rise in tensions has provoked concerns that the area is going through a critical moment and could have global consequences. Above, an aerial view shows Pagasa Island, which belongs to the disputed Spratly group of islands, claimed by China and Vietnam.


Na Son Nguyen/AP
Vietnamese protesters hold national flags and a slogan that reads "Paracel Islands and Spratly Islands belong to Vietnam" during a protest in Hanoi, Vietnam. 


STR/AFP/Getty Images
This aerial view of the city of Sansha on an island in the disputed Paracel chain, which China now considers part of Hainan province. China captured the Paracels from Vietnam in 1974.


ERIK DE CASTRO/REUTERS
Demonstrators in the Philippine capital of Manila chant anti-China slogans as they march towards the Chinese consulate in protest over the Scarborough Shoal islands.


ROMEO RANOCO/REUTERS
Abner Afuang, a former mayor and policeman, burns a Chinese flag during a protest in front of the Department of Foreign Affairs headquarters in Manila. Philippine defence and military officials have expressed concern over China's imposition of its claims in disputed areas in the South China Sea.


XINHUA/REUTERS
The Senkaku Islands, also known as the Diayou Islands in China, are a group of uninhabited islands. The archipelago is administered by Japan, but claimed by China. Sovereignty over the islands would give the ruling country exclusive oil, fishing and mineral rights in surrounding waters. Above, crew members on a Chinese surveillance ship take pictures as they sail near the disputed islands.


MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images
A banner shows an image of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda beside a picture of former Chinese leader Mao Zedong during an anti-Japanese protest outside the Japanese embassy in Beijing. The protesters were aroused by the disputed Diaoyu Islands, claimed by both China and Japan.


Getty Images/Getty Images
Anti-Japanese protesters are confronted by police as they demonstrate over the disputed Diaoyu Islands on September 16 in Shenzhen.


AP/AP
On September 15, protests against Japan for control of the disputed islands spread across more than a dozen cities in China and turned violent at times. Above, residents look at an over-turned Japanese-branded car during an anti-Japan protest in Xi'an in northwest China's Shaanxi province.


Kin Cheung/AP
An anti-Japan protester wears a banner reading 'Down with Japanese militarism' during a march to the Japanese Consulate General in Hong Kong.


AP/AP
On September 25, the Taiwanese fleet, which includes fishing boats and armed coast guard vessels, entered the waters in the East China Sea. Above, a Japan Coast Guard's patrol boat, shooting water against Taiwanese fishing boats.


HANDOUT/REUTERS
After Japan and China, Taiwan is the third country to lay claim on the islands. Japanese coast guard vessels fired water cannon to turn away around 40 Taiwanese fishing boats.


AP/AP
 According to the Japanese coast guard, all the Taiwanese vessels had left the territorial waters.



images:
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captions:
Countries have fought over territory in the South China Sea for centuries, but a recent rise in tensions has provoked concerns that the area is going through a critical moment and could have global consequences. Above, an aerial view shows Pagasa Island, which belongs to the disputed Spratly group of islands, claimed by China and Vietnam. ;*;Vietnamese protesters hold national flags and a slogan that reads "Paracel Islands and Spratly Islands belong to Vietnam" during a protest in Hanoi, Vietnam.  ;*;This aerial view of the city of Sansha on an island in the disputed Paracel chain, which China now considers part of Hainan province. China captured the Paracels from Vietnam in 1974. ;*;Demonstrators in the Philippine capital of Manila chant anti-China slogans as they march towards the Chinese consulate in protest over the Scarborough Shoal islands. ;*;Abner Afuang, a former mayor and policeman, burns a Chinese flag during a protest in front of the Department of Foreign Affairs headquarters in Manila. Philippine defence and military officials have expressed concern over China\(***)s imposition of its claims in disputed areas in the South China Sea.;*;The Senkaku Islands, also known as the Diayou Islands in China, are a group of uninhabited islands. The archipelago is administered by Japan, but claimed by China. Sovereignty over the islands would give the ruling country exclusive oil, fishing and mineral rights in surrounding waters. Above, crew members on a Chinese surveillance ship take pictures as they sail near the disputed islands. ;*;A banner shows an image of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda beside a picture of former Chinese leader Mao Zedong during an anti-Japanese protest outside the Japanese embassy in Beijing. The protesters were aroused by the disputed Diaoyu Islands, claimed by both China and Japan.;*;Anti-Japanese protesters are confronted by police as they demonstrate over the disputed Diaoyu Islands on September 16 in Shenzhen.;*;On September 15, protests against Japan for control of the disputed islands spread across more than a dozen cities in China and turned violent at times. Above, residents look at an over-turned Japanese-branded car during an anti-Japan protest in Xi\(***)an in northwest China\(***)s Shaanxi province.;*;An anti-Japan protester wears a banner reading \(***)Down with Japanese militarism\(***) during a march to the Japanese Consulate General in Hong Kong.;*;On September 25, the Taiwanese fleet, which includes fishing boats and armed coast guard vessels, entered the waters in the East China Sea. Above, a Japan Coast Guard(***)s patrol boat, shooting water against Taiwanese fishing boats. ;*;After Japan and China, Taiwan is the third country to lay claim on the islands. Japanese coast guard vessels fired water cannon to turn away around 40 Taiwanese fishing boats.;*; According to the Japanese coast guard, all the Taiwanese vessels had left the territorial waters. Daylife ID:
1347868076617
Photographer:
POOL;*;Na Son Nguyen;*;STR;*;ERIK DE CASTRO;*;ROMEO RANOCO;*;XINHUA;*;MARK RALSTON;*;Getty Images;*;AP;*;Kin Cheung;*;AP;*;HANDOUT;*;AP
Image Source:
REUTERS;*;AP;*;AFP/Getty Images;*;REUTERS;*;REUTERS;*;REUTERS;*;AFP/Getty Images;*;Getty Images;*;AP;*;AP;*;AP;*;REUTERS;*;AP
Gallery Source:
Daylife
Daylife Raw Data:
China - Japanhttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japanen-usAl Jazeerafeedback@daylife.com10Mon, 17 Sep 2012 07:47:57 GMTTue, 25 Sep 2012 09:24:55 GMT http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=03uhcfYd5XaZo

Countries have fought over territory in the South China Sea for centuries, but a recent rise in tensions has provoked concerns that the area is going through a critical moment and could have global consequences. Above, an aerial view shows Pagasa Island, which belongs to the disputed Spratly group of islands, claimed by China and Vietnam.

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 21:21:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=03uhcfYd5XaZoPOOLREUTERSReuters Pictures

Countries have fought over territory in the South China Sea for centuries, but a recent rise in tensions has provoked concerns that the area is going through a critical moment and could have global consequences. Above, an aerial view shows Pagasa Island, which belongs to the disputed Spratly group of islands, claimed by China and Vietnam.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=01SS5pobKfcZI

Vietnamese protesters hold national flags and a slogan that reads "Paracel Islands and Spratly Islands belong to Vietnam" during a protest in Hanoi, Vietnam. 

Sun, 19 Jun 2011 00:00:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=01SS5pobKfcZINa Son NguyenAPAP Photo

Vietnamese protesters hold national flags and a slogan that reads "Paracel Islands and Spratly Islands belong to Vietnam" during a protest in Hanoi, Vietnam. 

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0cV892c06j7Xm

This aerial view of the city of Sansha on an island in the disputed Paracel chain, which China now considers part of Hainan province. China captured the Paracels from Vietnam in 1974.

Fri, 27 Jul 2012 09:08:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0cV892c06j7XmSTRAFP/Getty ImagesGetty Images

This aerial view of the city of Sansha on an island in the disputed Paracel chain, which China now considers part of Hainan province. China captured the Paracels from Vietnam in 1974.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=008R9UhaCq4SN

Demonstrators in the Philippine capital of Manila chant anti-China slogans as they march towards the Chinese consulate in protest over the Scarborough Shoal islands.

Wed, 16 May 2012 02:37:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=008R9UhaCq4SNERIK DE CASTROREUTERSReuters Pictures

Demonstrators in the Philippine capital of Manila chant anti-China slogans as they march towards the Chinese consulate in protest over the Scarborough Shoal islands.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0aMS3hv3yL2xd

Abner Afuang, a former mayor and policeman, burns a Chinese flag during a protest in front of the Department of Foreign Affairs headquarters in Manila. Philippine defence and military officials have expressed concern over China's imposition of its claims in disputed areas in the South China Sea.

Fri, 27 Jul 2012 06:33:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0aMS3hv3yL2xdROMEO RANOCOREUTERSReuters Pictures

Abner Afuang, a former mayor and policeman, burns a Chinese flag during a protest in front of the Department of Foreign Affairs headquarters in Manila. Philippine defence and military officials have expressed concern over China's imposition of its claims in disputed areas in the South China Sea.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0bZlejN2u1eKa

The Senkaku Islands, also known as the Diayou Islands in China, are a group of uninhabited islands. The archipelago is administered by Japan, but claimed by China. Sovereignty over the islands would give the ruling country exclusive oil, fishing and mineral rights in surrounding waters. Above, crew members on a Chinese surveillance ship take pictures as they sail near the disputed islands.

Fri, 14 Sep 2012 11:06:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0bZlejN2u1eKaXINHUAREUTERSReuters Pictures

The Senkaku Islands, also known as the Diayou Islands in China, are a group of uninhabited islands. The archipelago is administered by Japan, but claimed by China. Sovereignty over the islands would give the ruling country exclusive oil, fishing and mineral rights in surrounding waters. Above, crew members on a Chinese surveillance ship take pictures as they sail near the disputed islands.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0cJUfZM48D9w0

A banner shows an image of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda beside a picture of former Chinese leader Mao Zedong during an anti-Japanese protest outside the Japanese embassy in Beijing. The protesters were aroused by the disputed Diaoyu Islands, claimed by both China and Japan.

Sun, 16 Sep 2012 09:31:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0cJUfZM48D9w0MARK RALSTONAFP/Getty ImagesGetty Images

A banner shows an image of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda beside a picture of former Chinese leader Mao Zedong during an anti-Japanese protest outside the Japanese embassy in Beijing. The protesters were aroused by the disputed Diaoyu Islands, claimed by both China and Japan.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0ba4dlw546c44

Anti-Japanese protesters are confronted by police as they demonstrate over the disputed Diaoyu Islands on September 16 in Shenzhen.

Sun, 16 Sep 2012 10:09:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0ba4dlw546c44Getty ImagesGetty ImagesGetty Images

Anti-Japanese protesters are confronted by police as they demonstrate over the disputed Diaoyu Islands on September 16 in Shenzhen.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=00wxcDlfhD7cS

On September 15, protests against Japan for control of the disputed islands spread across more than a dozen cities in China and turned violent at times. Above, residents look at an over-turned Japanese-branded car during an anti-Japan protest in Xi'an in northwest China's Shaanxi province.

Sat, 15 Sep 2012 10:54:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=00wxcDlfhD7cSAPAPAP Photo

On September 15, protests against Japan for control of the disputed islands spread across more than a dozen cities in China and turned violent at times. Above, residents look at an over-turned Japanese-branded car during an anti-Japan protest in Xi'an in northwest China's Shaanxi province.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0boH8RsaAZ16f

An anti-Japan protester wears a banner reading 'Down with Japanese militarism' during a march to the Japanese Consulate General in Hong Kong.

Sun, 16 Sep 2012 09:05:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0boH8RsaAZ16fKin CheungAPAP Photo

An anti-Japan protester wears a banner reading 'Down with Japanese militarism' during a march to the Japanese Consulate General in Hong Kong.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0clX2UNgkI0Pr

 The Taiwanese fleet, which includes fishing boats and armed coast guard vessels, entered the waters in the East China Sea. Above a Japan Coast Guard's patrol boat,discharges water against Taiwanese fishing boats. Sept. 25, 2012.

Tue, 25 Sep 2012 02:26:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=0clX2UNgkI0PrAPAPAP Photo

 The Taiwanese fleet, which includes fishing boats and armed coast guard vessels, entered the waters in the East China Sea. Above a Japan Coast Guard's patrol boat,discharges water against Taiwanese fishing boats. Sept. 25, 2012.

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=05rQ8PJdsy6N4

After Japan and China, Taiwan is the third country to lay claim on the islands. Japanese coast guard vessels fired water cannon to turn away around 40 Taiwanese fishing boat

Tue, 25 Sep 2012 03:15:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=05rQ8PJdsy6N4HANDOUTREUTERSReuters Pictures

After Japan and China, Taiwan is the third country to lay claim on the islands. Japanese coast guard vessels fired water cannon to turn away around 40 Taiwanese fishing boat

http://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=09GzbFT8nE5ZL

  All the Taiwanese vessels had since left the territorial waters, the Japanese coast guard said.

Tue, 25 Sep 2012 02:26:00 GMThttp://aljazeera.smartgalleries.net/gallery/China-_-Japan?image_id=09GzbFT8nE5ZLAPAPAP Photo

  All the Taiwanese vessels had since left the territorial waters, the Japanese coast guard said.



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