Thursday, July 02, 2015

See China’s rapid island-building strategy in action

The Fiery Cross Reef, 2,740,000 square meters. (CSIS Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative/Digital Globe)

By Simon Denyer July 1, WashPost

New images taken just this week show China building what look like military bases on reclaimed land in the South China Sea, a development likely to add to concerns in the United States and among its Asian neighbors.

China said on Tuesday that land reclamation had now finished on "some islands" in the South China Sea. But the focus is now likely to shift to the construction work that China is carrying out, which many fear will lead to further militarization of the South China Sea.

Images taken as recently as June 28 show how China has almost completed the construction of an airstrip at Fiery Cross Reef. The images were taken by Digital Globe and supplied to The Post by the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI) at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Land reclamation is now complete at Fiery Cross Reef. AMTI says construction of the air base is continuing “with ongoing paving and marking of the airstrip, an added apron, construction of a sensor array and development of additional support facilities.”

(More here.)

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