Middle Rocks

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Middle Rocks
Native name: Batuan Tengah
باتون تڠه
Pedra Branca island.png
The approximate location of Middle Rocks in the South China Sea is marked on the map by a cross.
Location South China Sea
Coordinates 1°19′31″N 104°24′32″E / 1.32528°N 104.40889°E / 1.32528; 104.40889Coordinates: 1°19′31″N 104°24′32″E / 1.32528°N 104.40889°E / 1.32528; 104.40889
State  Johor

The Middle Rocks (Malay: Batuan Tengah; Chinese: 中岩礁) are two uninhabited small rocks separated by 250 metres of open water located at the eastern opening of the Straits of Singapore on the western edge of the South China Sea. Previously claimed by both Malaysia and Singapore, the International Court of Justice ruled in 2008 that the rocks belong to Malaysia.


The Middle Rocks are 8.0 nautical miles (14.8 km; 9.2 mi) to the southeast of the Malaysian state of Johor and just 0.6 nautical miles (1.1 km; 0.69 mi) south of Pedra Branca, and stand between 0.6 metres (2.0 ft) and 1.0 metre (3.3 ft) above sea level.[1]

Ownership dispute[edit]

The approximate location of Middle Rocks in the South China Sea in relation to the countries and islands surrounding it.

Together with Pedra Branca and another rock formation within the vicinity known as South Ledge, Middle Rocks were the subject of a territorial dispute between Malaysia and Singapore. For Middle Rocks and South Ledge, the dispute arose when Singapore claimed both islets in 1993. The matter was settled by the International Court of Justice in 2007, which ruled that Middle Rocks belonged to Malaysia and Pedra Branca to Singapore.[2] The status of South Ledge remains unresolved.[3]

Following the decision, both countries said they would hold discussions to establish the maritime border around the area.

Malaysia sent a team from its Mapping and Survey Department which constructed a flag pole, five markers and a monument between 4 and 12 June 2008. The Malaysian flag was raised and the team sang the Malaysian national anthem, Negaraku, during a ceremony which was covered by the press on 13 and 14 June 2008.[4]


  1. ^ V. Anbalagan (25 May 2008), "Fisherman can now access Middle Rocks", New Straits Times 
  2. ^ International Decision|Sovereignty over Pedra Branca/Pulau Batu Putih, Middle Rock and South Ledge
  3. ^ "Court leaves sovereignty over South Ledge open". Asiaone (Reprint). New Straits Times. 24 May 2008. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  4. ^ Farik Zolkepli (15 June 2008), "Jalur Gemilang flying high at Middle Rocks", Sunday Star, retrieved 15 June 2008 .

Further reading[edit]