Đá Vành Khăn
|Mischief Reef in 2001, before Chinese land reclamation|
|Location||South China Sea|
|People's Republic of China|
|People's Republic of China|
|Republic of China (Taiwan)|
|Part of a series on the|
Spratly Islands military occupations map
Mischief Reef (Chinese: 美济礁; pinyin: Meiji Jiao; literally: "Meiji Reef"; Tagalog: Panganiban reef; Vietnamese: Đá Vành Khăn) is a large[vague] reef in the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea, located 250 kilometers west of Palawan Island of Philippines.
History and topography
One source says that Mischief reef was discovered by Henry Spratly in 1791 and was named after the German sailor Heribert Mischief, one of his crew.[dubious ] It has rocks above water at low tide and a lagoon.
Location and Description
In 1994 and 1995, China built initial structures on stilts in the area. The Philippine government protested these actions. However, the Chinese government rejected the protest and said that the structures were shelter for fishermen. In 1999, another wave of protests from Manila occurred when China added more structures to Mischief Reef.
China was also reported to have planted buoys in nearby Sabina Shoal. Philippines claimed that China had a well-rehearsed routine when laying claim to a new reef: first put down buoys, then build concrete markers. Temporary wooden or bamboo shelters followed, and then permanent structures went up. The Philippines therefore would try to destroy the buoys or markers before China has time to build larger structures. The Philippines' decision not to destroy the Chinese structures on Mischief Reef has prevented an escalation of the dispute. The Philippines claims that China has always been prepared for armed conflict when challenged, as is evident in China's defense of reefs from Vietnam in the 1988 Johnson South Reef Skirmish which resulted in more than 70 Vietnamese deaths.
On 11 July 2012, the Chinese Type 053 frigate Dongguan ran aground on the reef, sparking embarrassment for the Chinese government and causing an awkward diplomatic situation. The ship was later towed back to base.
In September 2015, photographs appeared that indicated China was developing the reef into a military base.
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