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2014-11-25 Tue 00:01
China is building an island in the South China Sea that could accommodate the country's first airstrip in bitterly contested waters, according to satellite images analyzed by IHS Jane's Defence Weekly.
Reclamation at Fiery Cross Reef on the western edge of the disputed Spratly islands is creating a land mass that is more than 3,000 meters (2 miles) long and between 200 to 300 meters (650 to 980 feet) wide -- large enough to construct a runway and apron, the publication said.
The South China Sea is the subject of numerous rival -- often messy -- territorial claims, with China, Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam disputing sovereignty of several island chains and nearby waters.