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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Spratly Islands

Michael Strupp

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2015. All Rights Reserved.date: 19 September 2019

Subject(s):
Islands and artificial islands — Exclusive economic zone — UNCLOS (UN Convention on the Law of the Sea) — Continental shelf — Territorial sea

Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law under the direction of Rüdiger Wolfrum.

1 The name Spratly Islands (‘Spratlys’), referring to an erratic cluster of various features located in the South China Sea, is based upon accidental historic tradition, not upon compelling geographical reasons: Spratly Island proper, lending the whole agglomeration its name, lies in the extreme south-westernmost corner of the entire group and measures only 13 hectares (‘ha’), making it merely the fourth-largest formation among the Spratlys. It is exceeded in size by Itu Aba 46 ha; Thitu 37.2 ha and West York 18.6 ha. There are only 12 fully-fledged islands in...
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