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China's coastguard will use force against foreign vessels and individuals

Christian Fernsby |
China passed a new law Friday granting the China Coast Guard (CCG) more leeway in asserting the nation’s claims in the contested South China Sea and authorizing the use of force against foreign vessels.

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Topics: CHINA   

The National People’s Congress passed the Coast Guard Law of the People’s Republic of China to help the CCG defend China’s “national sovereignty, security, and maritime rights and interests.”

Article 22 of the new law authorizes the CCG to “take all necessary measures including the use of weapons to stop infringements and eliminate dangers” when “foreign organizations and individuals” infringe upon China’s “national sovereignty, sovereign rights, and jurisdiction.”

Article 47 permits CCG personnel to use hand-held weapons when foreign vessels resist orders from the CCG and other stopping measures fall short.

Article 20 allows the CCG to stop foreign countries from “constructing buildings, structures, and setting up all kinds of fixed or floating installations” in China’s “jurisdictional waters” or on islands and reefs claimed by China. It also authorizes the CCG to demolish these structures.

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