“China is provoking tensions in the South China Sea by establishing a new city on a disputed island. But with the rule of law and diplomacy failing to provide a solution, what lengths will China go to to protect its territorial claims?
On Friday, China named two senior military generals to head a garrison in the South China Sea - on a group of islands also claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan.
The US has criticised the move, saying it is against measures that are seen as potential threats. But calls for dialogue are being ignored and tensions in the most disputed waters in the world are once again escalating.
The city, called Xansha, has a supermarket, a bank and a hospital – but very little else. Indeed, it has only 1,000 inhabitants.
Xiao Jie, the mayor of Xansha, told those attending the ceremony to mark the birth of China’s newest city:” “The establishment of Xansha city is a wise decision made by the party and the government of China to protect the sovereign rights of China and to strengthen the protection and the development of the natural resources.”
Read more: Aljazeera