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China maps out territorial claim on new passport

11-27-2012 09:31 BJT

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By CCTV reporter Xie Sisi

The new Chinese passport has been issued. It contains a map of maritime areas, which China has clearly stated are an inherent part of its sovereignty. Countries like Vietnam and the Philippines have called for a change of the new passports.

The revised version of the Chinese passport contains a few additional lines on the map.

The map lays a clear claim to maritime sovereignty by China over the South China seas.

Director of the Center for China’s International Strategic Studies explains why China has decided to update the map now.

Jin Canrong, Director of Int’l Strategic Studies Center at the Remin University, said, "I think China wants to show its sovereignty claims. As China’s overall international status is rising, our country becomes more confident."

China began issuing these new passports to include electronic chips on May 15, though criticism cropped up only recently. The Philippines also opposed the map. It’s causing many Chinese to consider changing their travel plans."

However Director Jin says the dispute is unlikely to escalate.

Jin Canrong said, "I notice that the countries who opposed the map are highly dependent on us economically. Although the sovereignty claims may bring some technical problems when it comes to travel, I believe our Foreign Ministry can resolve these problems."

China’s Foreign Ministry has reiterated the country’s stance.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said, "China’s standard electronic passports are issued according to international civil aviation standards. China is not targeting a specific country. China is willing to communicate with the relevant countries, and continue promoting contact and development with foreign personnel."

 

Editor:Zhou Minxi |Source: CCTV.com

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