Talk:Scarborough Shoal

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Are the island reefs, or not actual land? Are they uninhabited? Any former owner known? Fastifex 07:56, 27 January 2006 (UTC)

The links does not working. -Frj1947 13:12, 1 May 2006 (UTC)


...would be helpfulEugene-elgato (talk) 21:00, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

Needs citation[edit]

Compared to the other articles about the islands, the claims made here are particularly sparsely cited, or not at all. There are also some weasel words scattered about. So I added a tag. (talk) 11:10, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

BBC on April 2012 conflict[edit]

BBC link

BBC has odd mention of coral on-board a fishing vessel(s). I will look for any link on over-fishng this area or technology employed.

G. Robert Shiplett 12:17, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

jargon or euphemism ?[edit]


 used the area as an impact range for defense purposes

This sounds like gibberish unless it was a government press release. Naval gunnery ranges would not usually be coral reefs ? Has there been any international effort to protect the area ?

Why not just say that the area or some part of it was a naval gunnery range - in which case a map should be available?

G. Robert Shiplett 12:22, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

Inconsistent statements[edit]

From the lead:

  • "And starting from 1997, Philippines[2] joined in this dispute, made its claim to the shoal."

This is an indisputable fact from both government sources including quoted Philippines government sources. Other statements should be consistent with this fact.

Then later at the body:

  • "The Philippines claims that as early as the Spanish colonization of the Philippines... In 1957, The Philippine government conducted an oceanographic survey of the area."

This is false, all official maps up to 2006 from the Philippines and their constitutions explicitly omit the shoal at their territory.

Another one, this time at the geography section:

  • "The nearest landmass is Palauig, Zambales, on Luzon Island in the Philippines, 137 miles (220 km) away."

Then on the next sentence,

  • "It is about 123 miles (198 km) west of Subic Bay."

Can somebody reconcile these? (talk) 16:35, 12 April 2012 (UTC)

It appears to be correct. Palauig, Zambalas is about 220 km almost due east from Scarborough Shoal. Subic Bay is about 198 km east-northeast away, on the other side of a peninsula which forms the west side of the bay. See Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 04:58, 16 April 2012 (UTC)
I guess the anon is referring to the word "nearest." Palauig is the "nearest" at 220 km, but Subic Bay is just 198 km away... –HTD 06:57, 19 April 2012 (UTC)
Subic Bay is a body of water, of course. Palauig is a town located on the coast almost due east of the shoal. I've reversed the order of the two sentences, hoping that'll clear up the confusion. Perhaps the wording could be improved further. Feel free. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 07:39, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Apparent copyright or caption problems with image[edit]

The image File:Scarborough_Shoal_Filipinos.jpg in the article is captioned, "In 1997 Filipinos removed China's stone marker and planted a Philippine flag on Scarborough Shoal." The image description page says, "2008-02-20 (original upload date) (Original text : More than 50 years ago.)". The image appears to show persons dressed in a style more in keeping with an photograph over 50 years old than in keeping with a photograph taken in 1997. If the image is copyright-free because of its age, it does not show a 1997 event. If it shows a 1997 event, it is probably not copyright-free. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 04:16, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Apparently it's a recent photo, and probably not copyright free. See, and Philippine warship and Chinese vessels locked in standoff (April 12, 2012}, Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 04:29, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

File:Scarborough Shoal on Philippine Political Map.jpg Nominated for Deletion[edit]

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No mam.. Scarborough Shoal is under Philippines teritory..the Americans with Filipinos are all around there until Mt. Pinatubo erupted in 1991 and all the civilians as well as US citizens were evacuated to the US.. That place is very much of use to both US and Filipinos.

Bebe0114 (talk) 01:09, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

The shoal is also a fishing place for the native Filipinos.. When Mt. Pinatubo erupted, was there and we all evacuated with the Americans at the bases and the American base lease was in question but due to the volcanic eruption they went ahead and abandoned the bases. Bebe0114 (talk) 01:18, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

Suggestions re the Sovereignty dispute section[edit]

  1. The Sovereignty dispute section contains subsections about China (PRC and ROC lumped together) and the Philippines, but none of the other disputing countries. Subsections should be added for all disputing parties.
  2. The present subsections jumble together (A) descriptions of the claims, (B) descriptions of arguments about those claims by other disputing parties, and (C) arguments/observations about the claims put forward by WP editors. Items A and B ought to be in separate subsections (e.g., for each disputing party subsections for (a) that parties claims and (b, c, etc.) arguments by other disputing parties. I don't think (C - kibitzing by WP editors) belongs in there at all. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 06:35, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I agree it's all a bit jumbled up at the moment and it might be best to move the relevant material to a new article (Scarborough Shoal Dispute?) as per the Spratly Islands / Spratly Islands Dispute paradigm. This then keeps the descriptive separate from the ongoing events. The question then arises of how to keep this in sync with Territorial disputes in the South China Sea.► Philg88 ◄ Star.pngtalk 08:18, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Re one skirmish in the edit wars over this article[edit]

See Template_talk:Infobox_disputed islands#Country parameter. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 13:33, 24 April 2012 (UTC)


One of many things which this edit did was to change the coordinates given in this article from 15°11′N 117°46′E / 15.183°N 117.767°E / 15.183; 117.767 to 15°11′N 119°46′E / 15.183°N 119.767°E / 15.183; 119.767 (changing 117 to 119). Looking at various sources, I see that there is some disagreement about the coordinates of Scarborough Shoal.

There are other sources giving other coordinates. Could we come to a consensus about what coordinates to use in this article, and cite supporting sources for the consensus reached? Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 04:25, 25 April 2012 (UTC) (error fixed 08:51, 27 April 2012 (UTC))

Page protection[edit]

In recent days there has been a spike in disruptive IP and new editor contributions, and I think page protection for autoconfirmed users might be necessary for about 3 weeks. Apparently there is ongoing cyberspace fighting at the moment between Filipino and Chinese netizens, and I think this may be contributing towards these edits on Wikipedia, directly or indirectly. At the moment, internet users from both countries are vying to push their agendas across by defacing websites and advocating online action, due to heightened tensions; I suspect that this Wikipedia page may be listed on various internet forums for people to "fix up" (euphemism intended), though I haven't found anything specifically incriminating yet. (I wouldn't know the right Tagalog search terms to look for on google anyway.) More information on the recent internet warring here, here and here. Until the heat cools down, I think restricting edits to autoconfirmed users is long overdue. -- 李博杰  | Talk contribs email 05:35, 25 April 2012 (UTC)

I agree. I've semiprotected the page for two weeks. I don't think that the current state of the page is optimal, and hope that established editors will improve that during the period of protection. I'll be traveling beginning tomorrow and may not be checking Wikipedia frequently. Given this, I have no objection to other admins unilaterally modifying the protection which I have placed on this article. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 13:17, 25 April 2012 (UTC)
Wtmitchell is the inappropriate admin to do such a decision due to his bias. -- (talk) 03:11, 7 May 2012 (UTC)
I'm sure any admin would have made the exact same decision. -- 李博杰  | Talk contribs email 04:49, 7 May 2012 (UTC)
Never ever denied that, though. (talk) 06:00, 7 May 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for that, at least. I'm not aware that I'm biased on this topic, but I haven't reviewed my edits to this article. I am not consciously making WP:POV edits. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 11:06, 7 May 2012 (UTC)

About this![edit]

This thing you're all talking about truly belongs to the Republic of the Philippines! Nothing less and nothing more!!!! — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:34, 25 April 2012 (UTC)

The above is another example of the ongoing soapboxing going on in recent days. I would have removed this comment per talk page guidelines (WP:SOAPBOX, WP:FORUM, etc), however since it re-enforces my argument for page protection, I will leave it here. -- 李博杰  | Talk contribs email 06:37, 25 April 2012 (UTC)
Geolocate Batangas City, Philippines; Philippine Long Distance Telephone. -- 李博杰  | Talk contribs email 06:41, 25 April 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 26 April 2012[edit]

Change "Philippine name: Panatag Shoal, Bajo de Masinloc"

to "Philippine name: Panatag Shoal; Spanish name: Bajo de Masinloc"

Reason the name Bajo de Masinloc was given during Spanish times. Bajo is a Spanish word. Masinloc is a town. (talk) 11:42, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Not done: It might well be Spanish in origin, but that doesn't change the fact that it's now a Philippine name. --Tyrannus Mundi (talk) 13:25, 26 April 2012 (UTC)

Guo Shoujing's survey[edit]

In the "China's Claim" section it appears Filipinos are determined to put their version on it. I think this section should be sourced from Chinese government documents on the shoal. Rather this section goes straight into challenging her claim. — Preceding unsigned comment added by VerdantResources (talkcontribs) 19:42, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

The first paragraph of the section explaining China's claims on the Scarborough Shoal states that, "In 1279, Guo Shoujing, a Chinese astronomer, performed surveying of the South China Sea, and the surveying point was reported to be the Scarborough Shoal." (Reported by whom is not indicated.) This claim is repeated in blogs and newspaper articles all over the Internet, but I'm not sure what the original source is. Two things sound extremely unlikely: 1) that a high official like Guo Shoujing (1231-1316) would leave the court to conduct such a survey personally (almost impossible); 2) that the remote Shoal was used as a "surveying point" (not sure what that means in this context...) considering how far it is from the Chinese coast. Does anyone know the original source of these claims so we can assess the evidence it presents? Madalibi (talk) 23:04, 10 May 2012 (UTC)

Another claim that should be investigated is that "the shoal was first discovered and drawn in a map in the Yuan Dynasty as early as 1279." Since 1279 is also the year of Guo Shoujing's "survey of the South China Sea," this sentence implies that Guo was responsible for that map. Does anyone know the original source for this claim about a map of the South China Sea as early as 1279? Thanks! Madalibi (talk) 00:23, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────After some quick research: English Wikipedia article says Guo Shoujing never left China. The Hainan history article in Chinese Wikipedia zh:海南歷史 claims he carried out a "Survey of the Four Seas" (四海测验) in 1279 but has no citation. The Guo Shoujing article in Chinese Wikipedia makes no reference to a survey of the four seas, he seems instead to have primarily focused on canals and the inland waterway network. Internet sources. Chinese media and bloggers all make the same 1279 Guo map claim. Xinhua says there is a 1279 map but does not claim that it was made by Guo, only that he carried out a survey. See this article in Chinese. I can't find either the map or any contemporary supporting documentation.► Philg88 ◄ Star.pngtalk 07:29, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

China's claim is not based on a 1279 map. But the western media is trying to drive this propaganda because basing a claim on an old map is assurd. — Preceding unsigned comment added by VerdantResources (talkcontribs) 19:42, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for taking the time, Philg88! This is very helpful. I also found something. It seems the original claim that Guo Shoujing personally conducted a survey of the South China Sea in 1279 that took the Scarborough Shoal as a point of measurement comes from an article by historical geographer Han Zhenhua 韩振华 (1921-1993) titled "Nanhai [the South Sea] as Chinese national territory in the Yuan-era 'Measurement of the Four Seas'" 元代《四海测验》中的中国疆宇之南海. It was first published in 1979 in the journal Nanhai wenti yanjiu 南海问题研究 ["Research on issues concerning the South China Sea"],[1] then reprinted in 1981 in Collected Essays of Textual Research on the Historical Geography of the South Sea Islands 南海诸岛史地考证论集, and again recently in vol. 4 of Han Zhenhua's complete works.[2] The article has even been (loosely) translated into English here.
Han Zhenhua's explanation of why he thinks Guo Shoujing went to Nanhai in person appears in note 18. Personally I find it very far-fetched. His evidence is a brief uncontextualized passage from chapter 10 of History of Yuan (Yuanshi 元史) that says 庚戌,敕郭守敬繇上都、大都,历河南府抵南海,测验晷景. I would translate this as "On gengwu day [of the third month of the sixteenth year of the Zhiyuan 至元 reign, i.e., on 15 April 1279 of the Julian calendar], by edict [the emperor] ordered Guo Shoujing to measure the shadow of gnomons from Shangdu and Dadu, through Henan fu and to Nanhai." But Han takes di 抵 to mean "going in person." I just see it as an equivalent of "to" (dao 到 or zhi 至) in the expression "from X to Y" (in this passage: 繇 X 抵 Y; in modern Chinese: 從 X 到 Y).
We can find the broader context for this edict in a long account of Guo Shoujing's life that Nathan Sivin has translated in his book Granting the Seasons: The Chinese Astronomical Reform of 1280 (Springer, 2009). The relevant passage explains that in early 1279, when Guo was Director of Waterways (dushui jian 都水監), he memorialized to the throne arguing that new measurements should be made of the position of the north pole, the moon, the sun, and the stars in various places in the empire, in part because he thought these measurements would help to calculate the length of eclipses more precisely. As Guo's memorial ended: "At the moment there are few qualified observers but, to begin with, we can set up gnomons north to south and make direct measurements of their shadows" (Sivin, p. 577). The account of Guo's life continues: "The ruler approved his memorial, and provided Guo with fourteen [specialist] observers from the Directorate. He sent them out in succession by separate routes. They first determined that at Nanhai the north pole emerged from the earth 15 du [度, or degrees, but Sivin prefers to keep the Chinese terminology here]," etc. (Sivin, p. 578, translating an original he found in Yuan wen lei 元文類, chapter 50, pp. 717-18, if someone wants to find that).
Nathan Sivin (pp. 578-79) says that "Nanhai" 南海 ("South Sea") in this passage was located in "Central Vietnam." This is plausible because for most of Chinese history, Nanhai simply meant "Southeast Asia," a place to which Chinese people went by boat. He also says that a few of his identifications differ slightly from Chen Meidong's, a man who wrote a biography of Guo Shoujing (Guo Shoujing pingzhuan 郭守敬評傳, 2003), and that Nanhai "may not be the name of a single location." And: "Uncertainties due to the names used for places make it impossible to resolve the differences." (Note: we should find Chen's biography of Guo to see what he says "Nanhai" corresponded to. Sivin also refers to an article by Li Guoqing 李国青 et al. which he calls "the most detailed modern study of this survey": "Determination of Latitudes in the Yuan dynasty" 元朝的纬度测量, in Tianwen xuebao 天文学报 [Astronomy Bulletin] 18.1 (1977): 129-37.)
On the other hand, Han Zhenhua identifies "Nanhai" in the same survey as Huangyan Island. His argument is once again not very convincing. He says that "conservatives" at the court called Nanhai a point "further south than Zhu Yai" 朱崖 (the southern tip of Hainan Island). Han admits that Central Vietnam (Champa) was indeed located almost right south of Hainan, but he argues that Scarborough Shoal was the actual measuring point for the survey because it is better aligned with the Yuan capital on a north-south axis. His argument, which is quite technical, depends on proving the ability of Yuan astronomers to measure longitudes, but he never shows that Yuan astronomers were interested in measuring longitude in this particular project. He also dismisses explicit written sources pointing to Vietnam by saying that their authors were just "conservatives." And once again, he shows no evidence of any kind that the Yuan astronomers went to the high sea to conduct this survey of polar altitude.
Conclusions and questions
  1. I think we can determine with certainty that Guo Shoujing did NOT conduct this survey personally. Han Zhenhua's claim that Guo went there personally is based entirely on his dubious interpretation of a single character (抵) in a brief and context-less citation of an imperial edict. (No mention of sea travels in any document, no inkling in any of Guo's biographies that he ever took a boat, nothing.) The context of that citation makes it clear that Guo was in charge of the survey, but never had to leave the capital.
  2. I have seen no evidence in Nathan Sivin's 662-page study of Guo Shoujing's astronomical activities that Guo or anybody else ever conducted "measurements of the four seas" (四海測驗), the survey that many Chinese scholars mention, but do not reference. Did this survey even exist?
  3. None of the sources cited here mentions a map. This was a survey of polar altitude, not a cartographical project.
  4. We have an article by a scholar (Han Zhenhua) who was respected in his field, but makes a very dubious argument about Scarborough Shoal being the equivalent of "Nanhai" in Guo Shoujing's 1279 survey of polar altitude at 27 points in the Yuan empire. Han's claim of equivalence is contradicted (though not with explicit reference to Han's work) by a far more renowned scholar, Nathan Sivin, who conducted decades of research on Guo Shoujing before publishing his work on the 1280 astronomical reforms. We should look for Chen Meidong's biography of Guo Shoujing to see what he says.
  5. Finally, this page is not about Guo Shoujing, but about different claims to sovereignty on the Scarborough Shoal. Han Zhenhua's claims may be completely wrong, but it is still true that Chinese sources take his claim as evidence that China had discovered the Shoal by 1279. The official position of the Chinese government may be represented by a recent article in the PLA Daily that cites another historical geographer to the same effect, and that has already been widely reproduced.[3][4][5] The question becomes: how do we talk about a sovereignty claim that exists as such, but seems to be based on an unreliable source?
Thanks for reading! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 13:38, 11 May 2012 (UTC)
[Concerning point 2: this survey is mentioned by that name in the Yuanshi 元史 (monograph on astronomy 天文, I think). But note that sihai 四海 here refers to the "four seas" that were supposed to surround China. These "four seas" conventionally meant the empire as a whole. This means that the 1279 survey was an empire-wide survey, not a survey of actual seas. Madalibi (talk) 13:53, 11 May 2012 (UTC)]
Excellent research Madalibi, thanks. A little more - background to back up your point 2): The four seas historically referred to the area within the Chinese borders bounded by the four seas (i.e. 东,南,西,北) as for example in the ancient adage: 五湖四海皆兄弟人生何處不相逢 (The people of the five lakes and four seas are all brothers yet to be met). If there was a survey then it was almost certainly internal to China.
How to deal with this in the context of the territorial dispute is a tricky one but right now the putative sources for the claims in the article do not satisfy WP:Reliable.

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Thanks, Philg88. Let's now try to get more input from other editors! Madalibi (talk) 02:25, 12 May 2012 (UTC)

If it's just the opinion of one 20th century Chinese geographer it shouldn't be in the article. CMD (talk) 11:49, 12 May 2012 (UTC)
I would completely agree with you if this article was about Guo Shoujing himself. We could then label Han Zhenhua's article an unreliable source, delete the claim, and just move on. The problem is that the claim that Guo Shoujing's 1279 survey took Scarborough Shoal as a measuring point now appears in hundreds, if not thousands of Chinese sources about the Shoal. Han's point may not stand to scrutiny, but the PRC is still presenting it as evidence to support its claim to sovereignty. So do we just delete the statement about Guo's survey even if it's an important part of China's sovereignty claim, or do we present Han's argument with a disclaimer that the primary sources don't seem to support it, running the risk of violating WP:NOR? I'm really not sure what we should do in this kind of situation... Madalibi (talk) 08:04, 13 May 2012 (UTC)


Chen Meidong, the author of a full biography of Guo Shoujing, identifies Nanhai as a place along the coast of Central Vietnam (see table on p. 202 of Guo Shoujing pingzhuan 郭守敬评传, Nanjing University Press, 2003). He addresses the "Nanhai" issue twice in his book, on pp. 78 amd 204. On p. 204 he says that some scholars think that Nanhai is a place in the Xisha (Paracel Islands) or Zhongsha Islands (Macclesfield Bank), or even Huangyan Island (the Scarborough Shoal), but he finds these views "not appropriate" (不妥当). He makes two points: 1) Another measuring point in this survey is called "Beihai" 北海 (lit. "North Sea"), which corresponds to some place in Siberia far away from any sea, so "Nanhai" 南海 ("South Sea") doesn't have to be in the sea. 2) The point of measuring latitude at 27 different points in the empire was to be able to indicate length of day and night and extent and duration of eclipses in a calendar that would be useful to people. There was no need for surveyors to go out of their way to measure a remote, unpopulated island if measurements taken there were going to be useless for their main purpose, which was to produce an accurate calendar.

On p. 78 Chen Meidong mentions two other scholarly articles on this issue in Chinese. He cites an article saying that "Nanhai" in the 1279 survey should correspond to a place in the Xisha Islands, aka the Paracels (see reference 1 below). He also cites an article (reference 2 below) that claims that the main survey point was in South-Central Vietnam. Chen agrees with the second article. For him, the strongest piece of evidence supporting the identification of Nanhai with a place in Vietnam is the "Inscription on the Upward-facing Instrument" (仰儀銘; a hemispherical scaphe sundial used to measure latitude) cited in the "Treatise on Astronomy" 天文志 (chapter 48) of the History of Yuan, which says that the place where polar altitude is at "the extremely shallow 15 [degrees] is in the territory of Champa" 極淺一十五,林邑界也. This corresponds exactly to the claim found in Guo Shoujing's biography (Qi Lüqian's 齊履謙 "Zhi Taishiyuan shi Guo gong xingzhuang" 知太史院事郭公行狀, the main source of information on the 1279 survey) that the place called Nanhai was at 15 degrees of latitude.

Reference 1: Li Guoqing 厉国青 and Niu Zhongxun 钮种勋, "Study of Guo Shoujing's survey of the South Sea" 郭守敬南海测量考, in Xingtaishi Guo Shoujing jinianguan (ed.), Guo Shoujing ji qi shiyou yanjiu lunwenji 郭守敬及其师友论文集 (1996), pp. 169-79. First published in Dili yanjiu 地理研究 in 1982, issue 1.

Reference 2: Zeng Zhaoxuan 曾昭旋, "The Yuan-dynasty survey of Nanhai was in Champa: Guo Shoujing did not go to the Zhongsha or Xisha to measure latitude" 元代南海测验在林邑考--郭守敬未到西中沙测量纬度, in same book as reference 1, pp. 180-82. First published in Lishi yanjiu 历史研究 in 1990, issue 5.

So far we have three different identifications for the place called "Nanhai" 南海 in the 1279 "survey of the empire" 四海測驗:

  • Central Vietnam: Zeng 1996 [1990], Chen 2003, Sivin 2010.
  • Xisha Islands: Li and Niu 1996 [1982].
  • Scarborough Shoal: Han Zhenhua 1979.

As a historical argument, identification of Nanhai with a place in Central Vietnam is far more convincing than the alternatives. As Wikipedia editors, however, we should present the different available positions proportionally to their place in the field, while keeping in mind that Chinese official claims concerning Scarborough Shoal unanimously support Han Zhenhua's identification, but without mentioning any kind of debate on this issue. Hope this helps! Madalibi (talk) 00:58, 18 May 2012 (UTC)

I just found a detailed critique in Chinese of the claim that Guo Shoujing took Scarborough Shoal as a measuring point in 1279. Part 4, which you can find here, states the conclusions most clearly. The first three parts can be found here (just scroll down), along with more historical discussions of Chinese activities in (and maps about) the Huangyan Island. This is a very interesting (and, for once, dispassionate) discussion of the available historical evidence. Madalibi (talk) 13:00, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

Philippines stating the shoal was not Philippine territory[edit]

Some Chinese sources claim that before 1997 the government of the Philippines had stated the shoal was not Philippine territory. According to the official clarification letter to a telecommunication expedition group from Department of Environment and Natural Resources in Philippines on February 28th, 1994, the document officially verified that the Island was not part of the Philippine territory. On February 5, 1990, the Philippine ambassador to Germany made it clear that according to the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority, the Huangyan Island was not within the Philippine territory in a letter to Dieter, a German radio amateur.[1] On Nov. 18, 1994, the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority and Philippine Amateur Radio Association reconfirmed that the borders and sovereignty of Philippines were defined in the third clause of the Treaty of Paris on Dec. 10, 1898 and the Huangyan Island was located outside the borders of Philippine territory.[citation needed]
  1. ^ "Huang Yan Dao BS7H". March 13, 1994. 

I reverted the inclusion of this text for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the second part of it is unsourced and obviously contentious, and so shouldn't go in at all. The first part of it is sourced to a Chinese source, and I'd prefer translated quotes to be presented before it goes in. By "Some Chinese sources" does this text mean that the source notes Chinese sources say this, or is it just this one source which is being used to justify some? Also, is this source an official statement from a Chinese body? CMD (talk) 13:27, 12 May 2012 (UTC)

I tagged the statement as {{Source need translation}} for the mean time. Please don't remove unless we can find an English translation. The reference given doesn't seem to come from an official statement by the Chinese government; we need the English text (preferably from an official Chinese gov't. website) that will support that block of text. If we can find the similar claim in an English third-party website, then feel free to remove it. Xeltran (talk) 19:21, 12 May 2012 (UTC)
I took it out again. Given the contentiousness of the issue, we should at least know what the source says before using it in the article. CMD (talk) 19:58, 12 May 2012 (UTC)
The link above is to page 2 of a 15-page article on the efforts of some radio amateurs to establish Scarborough Shoal as an independent geographic entity (or "country") in order to compete for the radio amateur award DX Century Club (DXCC). Actually the relevant information is not on page 2, but in the last paragraph of page 4. We are told that an amateur group collected various documents that included "a letter dated 5 February 1990 from the ambassador of the Philippines in Germany to [radio] amateur Dieter, and a letter of attestation dated 28 February 1994 from the Philippines' Department of the Environment and Natural Resources; both documents explicitly state that the Philippines did not hold sovereignty over Huangyan Island" (1990年2月5日菲律宾驻德国大使致德国爱好者迪特的信和1994年2月28日菲律宾环境及自然资源部的证明信,这两份文件明确说明菲律宾对黄岩岛不拥有主权). That's it. The text of the documents is not cited. We also don't know how the writer obtained these letters, though that information might appear somewhere else in the 15 pages of the article. None of this sounds particularly convincing... Madalibi (talk) 06:43, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
Readers can just use the Google Translate to find out the English translation. STSC (talk) 04:27, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
The mangled grammar caused by that was difficult for me, and I understand Chinese sentence structures. We don't source based on google translate. CMD (talk) 15:17, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
I think you're just interested in raging edit wars. STSC (talk) 16:24, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
I'm re-adding the text within the WP:NOENG policy. STSC (talk)
The text you quoted wasn't even on the linked page. It also shouldn't be in the title parameter of a citation template. That's for the article title. CMD (talk) 13:57, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────We can consider inserting some kind of text on this, but we have to be careful how it's formulated. For one, we can't use vague words like "some sources claim." We need proper attribution. As a draft that we can all develop together, I propose something like this:

"An article on the Chinese website of the Global Times and an editorial in the People's Daily claim that the ambassador of the Philippines in Germany sent a letter to radio amateur "Dieter" in February 1990 stating that the Scarborough Shoal was not part of the Philippines. The article and the editorial also claim that in 1994 both the Philippines Department of the Environment and Natural Resources and the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority confirmed to the American Amateur Radio Association that the Philippines did not hold sovereignty over the shoal."

Followed by the two references. What do you all think? (Note that the "American Amateur Radio Association" doesn't seem to exist. Maybe the People's Daily is referring to the American Amateur Radio League, in which case it might be interesting to contact that League to see if they know of such a document...) Madalibi (talk) 14:18, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

The fact that all new text is being added in each time the disputed text is blatantly reinserted without any sort of consensus here has confused some members of the discussion. Vehoo clearly has missed the subject of the debate, as they're looking at an entirely different sources. Currently we have "<ref>{{cite web|title=A letter dated 5 February 1990 from the ambassador of the Philippines in Germany to radio amateur Dieter, and a letter of attestation dated 28 February 1994 from the Philippines' Department of the Environment and Natural Resources; both documents explicitly state that the Philippines did not hold sovereignty over Huangyan Island (1990年2月5日菲律宾驻德国大使致德国爱好者迪特的信和1994年2月28日菲律宾环境及自然资源部的证明信,这两份文件明确说明菲律宾对黄岩岛不拥有主权)|url=|date=March 13, 1994}}</ref>" as a source. 1990 isn't on that url, yet somehow is cited as a quote from it. There's no point rewriting if the sources don't even say what they're being quoted to say. CMD (talk) 16:05, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
Yes, good point. I see what you mean. The paragraph that some editors want to add back in presents unsupported claims as facts, and the format, title, and date of the citation are completely wrong. (Incidentally, I appreciate your patience and civility in dealing with this situation!) But I think we can do something about this. The right URL for the quote I translated above is The date of the article is 19 October 2011. The title is "The expedition of Chinese radio amateurs at Huangyan Island" 我国无线电爱好者“远征”黄岩岛始末 (that's a loose translation). No author is indicated. The passage that is indicated as title in the footnote is actually my translation of the relevant passage in the article, but it omits to say that these are the documents that the radio amateur team allegedly collected. My rewording takes all these corrections into account. Gotta go, but I'll be back tomorrow. Take it easy, everyone! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 17:12, 19 May 2012 (UTC)
Ah, so the text does exist. This is good news. What we need is specific points from each source, backed up with quotes (and translations if necessary) for these. After that it's a simple matter of organising them into a paragraph. Rather than just have both sources as the end, we should have the sources placed after the chunk of text they support. That way a reader knows what information comes from where. CMD (talk) 17:23, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Ok, I'm back. The claims do sound far-fetched, but yes, the text does exist! The proper format of the reference should be...[1] The second reference is to an English-language editorial on the People's Daily website.[2]

  1. ^ ""The story of Chinese radio amateurs' 'remote expedition' to Huangyan Island" 我国无线电爱好者"远征"黄岩岛始末 (in Chinese)". Global Times. October 19, 2011. Retrieved May 20, 2012. The expeditionary team also collected a letter dated 5 February 1990 from the ambassador of the Philippines in Germany to radio amateur Dieter, and a letter of attestation dated 28 February 1994 from the Philippines' Department of the Environment and Natural Resources; both documents explicitly state that the Philippines does not hold sovereignty over Huangyan Island. (远征队还收集了1990年2月5日菲律宾驻德国大使致德国爱好者迪特的信和1994年2月28日菲律宾环境及自然资源部的证明信,这两份文件明确说明菲律宾对黄岩岛不拥有主权.) 
  2. ^ "China has legal basis for sovereignty over Huangyan Island". People's Daily. May 10, 2012. Retrieved May 20, 2012. On February 5, 1990, the Philippine ambassador to Germany made it clear that according to the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority, the Huangyan Island is not within the Philippine territory in a letter to Dieter, a German radio amateur. In documents sent to the American Amateur Radio Association on Oct. 18, 1994 and Nov. 18, 1994, the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority and Philippine Amateur Radio Association had confirmed that the borders and sovereignty of Philippines is defined in the third clause of the Treaty of Paris on Dec. 10, 1898 and the Huangyan Island is located outside the borders of Philippine territory. 

The quote is optional for the English editorial. I'm out of time for now, but let's keep building this up! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 02:06, 20 May 2012 (UTC)

Forgive me for jumping into the middle of this discussion, I am new to Wiki (as far as editing and contributing is concerned). I may not aware of some of the etiquette here. So forgive me as I follow the learning curve to navigate through this.
However I would like to provide some bits of information I found on the web regarding the DXpeditions to Huangyan Island (1995 and 1997).
The websites are maintained by Tim Totten (probably a better source for you to quote due to its neutrality), one of the participants to both of the 1995 and 1997 DXpeditions.
BS7H 1995 (
BS7H 1997 (
Note that in one of the BS7H 1997 Bulletins, namely, Bulletin 13, 07MAY97 - Reason for early departure, the author mentioned:
"It is important to note that the Philippine officers admitted that there is no Philippine claim to the reef itself. The captain of the lead Ocean Bureau ship, of course, stated the Chinese position that Scarborough reef is P.R.C. territory and provides the baseline for a 12 nautical mile Territorial Sea (TS) surrounding the reef. [Despite recent speculation posted to the DX reflector, China is the undisputed owner of Scarborough Reef. Substantial evidence supporting this fact was submitted to the ARRL DX Advisory Committee, including official statements from the Philippine government. --N4GN]"
It is possible then, I theorize, to obtain the official documents (conceivably the two documents you are looking for) from the ARRL DX Advisory Committee. Showmebeef (talk) 07:08, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Hmmm, interesting. We may be getting close to something. Tim Totten's claim that the Philippine officers admitted their country did not officially claim the reef wouldn't count as a reliable source, but his claim that "substantial evidence," "including statement from the Philippine government" can verify that China is the "undisputed owner" of the reef is worth pursuing. Thanks a lot for the lead! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 07:37, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Proposed paragraph on contentious claim[edit]

Here's the reformulated paragraph as I proposed it above, with full references to two online sources. The relevant passage in the Chinese source is fully translated. The wording is neutral, and the two sources' claims are not presented as facts. Readers are allowed to make up their mind on the weight of the evidence presented. Anyway, let us all know if you could live with this version. Any suggestions for further improvement are of course very welcome. So here it is:

An article on the Chinese website of the Global Times and an editorial in the People's Daily claim that the ambassador of the Philippines in Germany sent a letter to radio amateur "Dieter" in February 1990 stating that the Scarborough Shoal was not part of the Philippines; they also claim that in 1994 both the Philippines Department of the Environment and Natural Resources and the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority confirmed to the American Amateur Radio Association that the Philippines did not hold sovereignty over the shoal.[1][2]
  1. ^ "The story of Chinese radio amateurs' 'remote expedition' to Huangyan Island 我国无线电爱好者"远征"黄岩岛始末 (in Chinese)". Global Times. October 19, 2011. Retrieved May 20, 2012. The expeditionary team also collected a letter dated 5 February 1990 from the ambassador of the Philippines in Germany to radio amateur Dieter, and a letter of attestation dated 28 February 1994 from the Philippines' Department of the Environment and Natural Resources; both documents explicitly state that the Philippines does not hold sovereignty over Huangyan Island. (远征队还收集了1990年2月5日菲律宾驻德国大使致德国爱好者迪特的信和1994年2月28日菲律宾环境及自然资源部的证明信,这两份文件明确说明菲律宾对黄岩岛不拥有主权.) 
  2. ^ "China has legal basis for sovereignty over Huangyan Island". Editorial in the People's Daily. May 10, 2012. Retrieved May 20, 2012. On February 5, 1990, the Philippine ambassador to Germany made it clear that according to the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority, the Huangyan Island is not within the Philippine territory in a letter to Dieter, a German radio amateur. In documents sent to the American Amateur Radio Association on Oct. 18, 1994 and Nov. 18, 1994, the Philippines Mapping and Resource Information Authority and Philippine Amateur Radio Association had confirmed that the borders and sovereignty of Philippines is defined in the third clause of the Treaty of Paris on Dec. 10, 1898 and the Huangyan Island is located outside the borders of Philippine territory. 

Support? Oppose? Comments? I'm sure we can work things out! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 05:54, 20 May 2012 (UTC)

Those statements are consistent with the timeline and Philippines maps, their constitution, the Treaty of Paris and several sources from the Philippines. UNCLOS '82 EEZ laws came into effect in late 2004. It appears after recognizing fishing waters would be lost, Filipinos decided to challenge for the shoal in 1997. — Preceding unsigned comment added by VerdantResources (talkcontribs) 18:04, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

I wonder why a newspaper has a mil. url, but considering both sources are exactly the same the new paragraph is formatted well. I wouldn't object to this being added. CMD (talk) 08:19, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for your support! I think the mil. prefix indicates that the article is classified in the section on "military affairs" of the Global Times website. The Global Times is often more assertive and more overtly nationalistic than the CCP's official line, so we shouldn't be surprised to find this kind of article on their website, or to find an article on radio amateurs in the military section. Madalibi (talk) 10:37, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
Three days and no response apart from CMD's, so I just went ahead and posted the proposed paragraph. Worded and referenced as it is, it shouldn't be controversial. Don't hesitate to make any improvement you find necessary. Madalibi (talk) 05:45, 23 May 2012 (UTC)

IMO it should be deleted totally as The Global Times has not backed up this claim with hard evidence. Regardless if true on not, individuals or agencies have no power to claim or unclaim such. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Boopolo (talkcontribs) 08:05, 9 December 2012 (UTC)

it is worth mentioning that in 1997 a Philippine judge dismissed charges of illegal entry into Philippine territory against 21 Chinese fishermen apprehended by the Philippine navy near Scarborough Reef finding that “there can be no legal basis as yet for the conclusion that the accused...entered Philippine territory illegally” as it had not yet been established that that area “exclusively belongs to the exclusive 32 economic zone of the Philippines” based upon the 1978 Presidential Decree.

In 1992, Jorge Coquia, a legal adviser to the Philippine government stated that “the Philippines has no intention or interest in any area in the South China Sea outside 37 the limits set forth in P.D. No.1596.” That statement indicates that the Philippine claim over the South China Sea is limited to the Kalayaan area. Nevertheless, its claim to Scarborough Reef is a new one and relates to an area beyond the limits of the Kalayaan area. It is therefore inconsistent with what the Philippines had expressed before. Thus unless the Philippines could justify that their claim to Scarborough Reef was an old one, already in existence before the Kalayaan claim, its claim is probably not tenable. — Preceding unsigned comment added by VerdantResources (talkcontribs) 19:42, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

Wrong.. Very Wrong.. Philippines is very much interested in the area..

That is why it was brought to the Tribunal Court..

Bebe0114 (talk) 07:51, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

The area was tenable because that's a livelihood place of the Filipinos

Bebe0114 (talk) 07:53, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

A whole lot of Chinese who does not know what they are saying are editing this Wikipedia or they are just full of lies.. The American soldiers with the Filipinos hold their drills there because the Naval Station is just there.. Don't even know what they are talking about as they edit.. No wonder this Wikipedia page is all full of Chinese writing.. Bebe0114 (talk) 07:57, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

37nm..??? I don't think SO.. 200 nm EEZ.. And that was hardly fought in court.. IfChina did not show up after all the chance he was given then .. He has waived himself to be represented.. Thecase proceeds ex-parte..

Bebe0114 (talk) 08:05, 8 November 2016 (UTC)
In hopes of clearing up apparent confusion above re the number 37, I'll say that it seems to me that the number probably comes from this document, where it says on page 76 (page 6 of the PDF):

In 1992, Jorge Coquia, a legal adviser to the Philippine government stated that “the Philippines has no intention or interest in any area in the South China Sea outside the limits set forth in P.D. No.1596.”37

The document quoted above is currently cited in footnote number 3 in the article. The supercripted 37 in the quoted snipped refers to

37 Coquia, J. (1992) ‘Philippine Position on the South China Sea Issues’, in Pablo-Baviera (ed.), supra note 26, at 53.

supra note 6 there refers, I think, to note 26 in that quoted document, which cites PD1596. I don't know what "at 53" refers to.
See also PDs 1596 and 1599, which are currently cited as footnotes 44 and 45 of the article, and "page 60 of the book Law of the Sea in East Asia: Issues and Prospects which is currently cited in footnote number 46 of the article.
I hope that adds clarity rather than compounding confusion. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 21:36, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

The 1279 map[edit]

Hi everybody. Even the lone scholarly source that claims that a 1279 survey of the empire took the Scarborough Shoal as a measuring point (see reference to the article by Han Zhenhua in section called "Guo Shoujing's survey" above) says nothing about a map. This is not surprising, considering that Guo Shoujing's survey did not aim to map the empire's territories, but only to measure day length and the altitude of the pole star on summer solstice at 27 different points in the empire, so that eclipse and other astronomical predictions made for the capital (in the north) could be adjusted according to the latitude of other places in the huge Yuan empire.

Now, it's extremely unlikely that another empire-wide survey of the kind necessary to produce a map would have been conducted in the exact same year (1279), yet would not be mentioned in the annals of the Yuan empire for that year (the 16th year of Zhiyuan 至元), which can be found in chapter 10 of the History of Yuan.

I just think the claim that a map including Scarborough Shoal was produced in 1279 is a mistaken extrapolation of the claim that Guo Shoujing took the atoll as a measuring point in his 1279 "measurements of the four seas." Since STSC disagreed with the "dubious" tag, I'm not insisting to put it back on, but I think at least a "citation needed" tag is needed, because the map claim is distinct from the survey claim, which I also tagged for reasons I explained above in the section on "Guo Shoujing's survey." I hope this is all fair and clear! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 11:50, 13 May 2012 (UTC)

In the process of writing a better paragraph on that 1279 survey of the Yuan empire, I have removed the map claim altogether. Even Han Zhenhua's article, one of the few sources claiming that the 1279 survey took Huangyan Island as a measuring point, does not mention a map, and makes it very clear that this survey was an astronomical survey, not a cartographic survey. None of the four other sources about the 1279 survey that are referenced on this talk page mentions a map, and neither does an article in the PLA Daily that presents "Six irrefutable proofs that Huangyan Island belongs to China." Without any support from five different scholarly sources and the Chinese government's semi-official statement about Huangyan Island in the 1279 survey, the map claim becomes too dubious to stay on this page. Anyone who disagrees bears the burden of proof and should therefore present reliable sources here on the talk page before reinserting this claim into the article. Thank you! Madalibi (talk) 05:35, 22 May 2012 (UTC)

Full protection[edit]

I have fully protected the page from editing for two days. This is not an endorsement of the current version. Discuss it here and work it out. Dennis Brown - © 22:12, 19 May 2012 (UTC)

Uhh... has semi-protection been removed early? Because this was supposed to last for a few months and expire 12 August 2012. Removing semi-protection is a very, very bad idea in my opinion. Anticipating disruptive IP edits from China and the Philippines in 3... 2... 1... -- 李博杰  | Talk contribs email 02:54, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
I'm not sure. If things are working properly, it's full protection, not semi-protection, that just got canceled, but maybe both of them got removed at the same time by mistake. Could an admin make sure semi-protection is still in place? Thanks! Madalibi (talk) 03:10, 22 May 2012 (UTC)


1279 observation: It should be noted that an observation in 1279 would have occurred during the height of the Mongol Empire eight years after Kublai Khan first proclaimed dynasty in the Chinese style (beginning of the Yuan dynasty). At the time the mongol empire stretched from Korea to Turkey and the center of empire -- Mongolia or China -- was a matter of recent dispute.

International Law: Has any outside legal expert written a review of the subject with respect to the Law of the Sea Treaty and other relevant precedents? What grounds are considered in mediating a dispute? How long does it take to mediate a dispute? Examples of mediated disputes?

Oil and Gas reserves: a timeline of oil and gas exploitation in the South China Sea (including Philippine fields at Malampaya and Recto Bank, and all chinese operated fields). Map of known and potential oil fields? Money involved (relative importance to China and smaller economies). Petroleum reserves involved. Chinese role in operating fields outside their national boundaries (the bulk of the money traditionally goes to lease owners and operators and CNOOC of China would like a role at Recto Bank). Interesting articles to cite from this year: (  ; )

Other territorial conflicts in the South China Sea and Japan Sea (Map of disputed territories? -- at least a better map [graphics, enlarged size] in the larger article about the South China Sea): Including those between Vietnam, China, Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia). Notably the 2010 fishing dispute in the Diaoyu Islands and Japanese arrest of fishing captain, the 1974 battle for the Paracels (, the 1988 military engagement in the Spratly Islands ( ), Firing on Vietnamese fishing vessels in 2011 at East London Reef and Cross Island, etc.

Best of Luck editors. Tgranulosa (talk) 17:09, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Thank you for your suggestions. I think the topic of oil and gas reserves in the South China Sea would deserve its own wiki, but a few well-referenced mentions here would certainly be helpful. Other conflicts in the area are summarized in Territorial disputes in the South China Sea, where a few general maps can also be found. But maps are often a problem on Wikipedia, because most professional maps are not in the public domain. As for the 1279 survey, I'm preparing a paragraph on it and on various interpretations of it in the political and scholarly literature. Thanks again for the suggestions. Some will make fine additions to this page. Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 00:49, 22 May 2012 (UTC)

New paragraph on the 1279 survey[edit]

I just wrote a new paragraph on contending claims concerning the role of Scarborough Shoal in Guo Shoujing's 1279 survey of the altitude of the Pole Star and length of day at 27 different locations of the Yuan empire. The paragraph cites a Chinese scholar who argues that the measuring point called "Nanhai" 南海 (literally "South Sea") in that survey corresponds with Huangyan Island, as well as Chinese and Western scholars who disagree. I also cite the old official view of the PRC, which said that the survey measured the latitude of "Nanhai" in the Xisha Islands, not at Scarborough Shoal. I tried to use neutral wording and to present these views in chronological order with an impartial tone and without editorializing. Let me know if you think something is missing, or if you can think of ways to improve the wording. Thank you! Madalibi (talk) 05:48, 22 May 2012 (UTC)

Good job Madalibi! I have copyedited one sentence thar was a bit mangled but the sense remains.► Philg88 ◄ Star.pngtalk 07:18, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the copyediting, Philg88. The sentence now flows much better! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 07:31, 22 May 2012 (UTC)

Coordinate error[edit]


The following coordinate fixes are needed for

Chitotuason (talk) 08:33, 26 May 2012 (UTC),117.768175&spn=0.002946,0.005284&sll=37.09024,-112.5&sspn=39.507908,120.058594&hnear=Scarborough+Reef&t=m&z=18&iwloc=A

Not done. The feature covers quite a bit of area, and both the coordinates given in the article and the ones you've given indicate points in that area. I see no reason to change to coordinates that are overprecise for this large a feature. Deor (talk) 09:47, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

Dieter's dubious 1994 letter (again)[edit]

Madalibi I'll certainly defer to you, CMD, etc., as I've only been making occasional edits here and I don't read Chinese characters. But my colleague here does, and he says that the source for this supposed Phil. Env. Dept. letter to Dieter in '94 says just the opposite...."unquestionable" Phil. sovereignty. Same thing when I dump it into Google translate. And since the second source is an opinion piece from a Chinese retired investment banker with no primary knowledge of said letter, and since the Phil. have been loudly proclaiming Scarborough as their sovereignty for so long that it's unlikely that an official letter like this would ever been written, this whole paragraph sounds a bit WP:dubious to me. Let me know what I'm missing...again, I've not been following this all that closely except to read the long exchange above.DLinth (talk) 18:46, 8 June 2012 (UTC)

Hi DLinth. Thanks for your message! I agree that this letter to Dieter is dubious. Why does "Dieter" have no last name? And why has no scan of this letter been posted anywhere? We don't even know if it actually exists. The official statements from different Philippine agencies supposedly claiming that Scarborough Shoal does not belong to the Philippines have been equally impossible to verify. This is why the paragraph I wrote for the article simply says that an article in the PLA Daily (a newspaper published by the Chinese army, hardly an unbiased source) claims that such letters exist and that they supposedly say such-and-such. Careful readers should be able to distinguish interested claim from proven fact. (I hope!)
As for what the Chinese source cited in Note 17 says, the key phrase is 这两份文件明确说明菲律宾对黄岩岛不拥有主权: "these (zhe 这) two documents (liang fen wenjian 两份文件) explicitly (mingque 明确) state (shuoming 说明) that the Philippines (Feilübin 菲律宾) do not (bu 不) possess (yongyou 拥有) sovereignty (zhuquan 主权) over (dui 对) Huangyan Island (Huangyan dao 黄岩岛)." The negative 不 (bu) makes this sentence unambiguous. Is this the sentence you were referring to? Anyway, if there's another sentence you found that's relevant to our discussion, don't hesitate to post it here and we'll see what we can do! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 03:19, 9 June 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. My bad. My colleague missed the negative, sees it now. And I agree that you present this letter's dubious content simply as what was thrown out there in the PLA Daily ....scant evidence from "hardly an unbiased source" as you say....if you think that rises to the level of a verifiable source worthy of even citing in WP, ok by me. Thanks again. DLinth (talk) 17:28, 11 June 2012 (UTC)
No problem at all. To me that PLA Daily article doesn't verify any factual information on Scarborough Shoal: it just shows that a source close to the Chinese government is making such a claim. In other words, it just documents the existence of the claim without supporting it. This is a fine line, though, and if you can convince other editors that this debate should be reopened, don't hesitate to do so. Anyway thanks a lot for your concern with this article! Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 00:16, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

The Philippine & Chinese positions re direct negotiations vs. resolution by ITLOS[edit]

The final paragraph in the Claim by the Philippines section of this article currently reads:

The Philippine government has proposed taking the dispute to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) as provided in Part XV of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, but the Chinese government has rejected this, insisting on bilateral discussions.

Three supporting aources are cited, including a PDI Opinion piece saying, "the parties must agree on the choice of the method of settlement to be used", and the Settlement of Disputes part of the UNCLOS agreement.

Here, I was editing the Spratly Islands dispute article this morning, and added a supporting source citation to that article. That source newly cited there is DECLARATION ON THE CONDUCT OF PARTIES IN THE SOUTH CHINA SEA, Association of Southeast Asian Nations, November 4, 2002  -- jointly signed by senior representatives of Brunei, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, The Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. That declaration appears to encompass conduct regarding Scarborough Shoal as well as the Spratly Islands. I noticed particularly that the parties undertook in that declaration, "to resolve their territorial and jurisdictional disputes by peaceful means, without resorting to the threat or use of force, through friendly consultations and negotiations by sovereign states directly concerned,".

I'm hesitant to introduce information about this November 2002 agreement into this article out of the blue, but thought that it might be useful to mention it here on this talk page as it does seem to bear directly on the Philippines and Chinese positions presented in this article, as characterized in the article snippet quoted above.

Incidentally, I see by digging back that I introduced the cites of the three sources mentioned above in this edit, which I now see should not have concerned itself only with info from article 286 of [6], but should have mentioned material re earlier articles as well. This edit removed those supported details but retained the source citations. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 20:17, 20 June 2012 (UTC)

"Chinese claims"[edit]

Is the better section title, since the section itself opens with "The People's Republic of China and Republic of China (Taiwan) claim that Chinese people...". Titling it with "Claims by China and Taiwan" is inconsistent with the text, which provides a historical background predating 1949, and implies that the ROC claims have originated only after 1949, since the PRC is widely regarded to be the successor state to "China". GotR Talk 22:14, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

It isn't inconsistent with the text at all. There's no implication that either claim originated after 1949. As you note, there's historical background. Historical background explains the claim, so how you can twist the inclusion of historical background into it somehow giving the impression that a claim is post 1949 is beyond me. CMD (talk) 22:37, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
Hi guys! I also don't think the title is inconsistent with the text, because "China" and "Taiwan" are simply short for the People's Republic of China and the Republic of China (Taiwan). Though some claims may be older than 1949, the dispute with the Philippines has only started recently, so we are looking at the claims that are being made now. If we want to emphasize that some Chinese claims predate 1949, I think we should do it in the text by explaining that the Republic of China published documents supporting its claims in 1935 and 1947. That would make the point more effectively than by modifying the section title. It's a little bit more work, but that'll result in a more stable version. What do you think? Cheers, Madalibi (talk) 01:40, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
The 1935 claim and 1947 naming are in the article already. If you have any sources adding more, I agree with expanding that. CMD (talk) 11:58, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Why is Chinese claim put first?

Under UN international law (EEZ)the islands belong to Philippines. The Philippines have time again offered China to take the dispute to international arbitration and they have refused. Given that, and the fact that according to EEZ they belong to the Philippines; and that China red dotted line is just a Chinese claim, The Philippines claim should be put first in this article because it is within international law. Most scholars conclude that the shoal itself would not be able to create it's own EEZ. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Boopolo (talkcontribs) 07:53, 9 December 2012 (UTC)

Effective control[edit]

According to M. Taylor Fravel, as a result of the 2012 standoff, the situation changed from nobody having a permanent presence to China having effective control.[7] This fact should probably be reflected in the article. Shrigley (talk) 22:58, 8 November 2012 (UTC)

New research on Scarborough Shoal brings new details[edit]

Hi everyone,

There is a new research on Scarborough Shoal published on November 2012 by a French Research Institute which brings new items.

1)During the Spanish and American colonial time, the Filipinos organized rescue operations on the shoal 2)In 1937-38 the Commonwealth of the Philippines, in complete agreement with the U.S State Department and other mainland Departments (War, Navy, Commerce), claimed the shoal 3)In the early 1960's the Philippine's Navy stopped smuggling operations, pushing the Philippine government to build a small lighthouse with a flag in 1965, with no protest from the Chinese.

The author of this research has put the evidences in the text and I think at least these 3 items should be added in the article on Scarborough Shoal in Wikipedia. What do you think ?

The research is here :

I have added the references of this document in further reading, is it ok with you ?

Applevillage (talk) 07:48, 24 November 2012 (UTC)


p]>> Philippines seeks US ships to counter China(Lihaas (talk) 11:51, 15 January 2014 (UTC)).

Edit war over Philippine claims[edit]

We have a bit of an edit war going on here. This needs to stop. This should be discussed here (see WP:BRD).

  • 13:26, March 13, 2014 here 'Markxvi removed some content without explanation.
  • 19:45, March 13, 2014 Philg88 reverted, saying "Reverted good faith edits by Markxvi (talk): Rv: Unexplained deletion of referenced material."
  • 20:18, March 13, 2014 Markxvi re-removied the material without explanation.
  • 22:30, March 13, 2014 Philg88 re-reverted, saying "Reverted good faith edits by Markxvi (talk): Rv: Repeat deletion of referenced content - You need to explain on the article's talk page why this should be removed."
  • 01:40, March 14, 2014 Markxvi re-removied the material without explanation.
  • 10:50, March 14, 2014 I reverted the re-removal of this material (though I was unaware of the edit war at the time), saying"Reverted 1 edit by Markxvi (talk): Revert unexplained removal of content"
  • 13:45, March 14, 2014 Markxvi re-removied the material without explanation.
  • 13:45, March 14, 2014 Philg88 restored the material, saying "Claim by the Philippines: Moving the disputed paragraph down to avoid giving it undue weight, copyedit first sentence to avoid word repetition and improve readability"
  • 14:09, March 14, 2014 Markxvi re-removied the material without explanation.
  • 14:19, March 14, 2014 Madalibi restored the material, saying "Reverted 1 edit by Markxvi (talk): This paragraph has problems, but it's time to stop removing it without explaining why; please use the talk page!"
  • 14:26, March 14, 2014 Markxvi re-removied the material without explanation.
  • 14:28, March 14, 2014 Madalibirestored the material, saying "Reverted 1 edit by Markxvi (talk) to last revision by Madalibi."
  • 4:33, March 14, 2014 Markxvi re-removied the material without explanation.

That's where things stand as I write this. There have been some brief exchanges about this on the talk pages of involved editors. I'm going to place a level 4im warning about removal of content on Markxvi's talk page along with pointers to WP:EW, WP:3RRand WP:ES. I'll also restore the material with some minor changes. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 08:55, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

The contested paragraph[edit]

Markxvi has removed this paragraph many times:

When comparing the claim of the Philippines with that of China, the former is the newer of the two. This was acknowledged by the Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Domingo Siazon when he delivered a statement on the Scarborough Reef in a public hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations and Defense Committees on 5 June 1997, saying that “Scarborough Shoal is a new issue on overlapping claims between the Philippines and China”. Historically, the Philippines had no territorial claim to Scarborough Reef. Even in a 1978 map which was published by the Philippine National Mapping and Resource Information Authority, Scarborough Reef was not marked as Philippine territory.<ref>Law of the Sea in East Asia: Issues and Prospects, Keyuan Zou, 2005, Univ. of Singapore. pg 58</ref>

Philg88, Wtmitchell and I have all reverted to the previous version — claiming that this was an unexplained removal of referenced information — but Markxvi has kept removing it anyway. Philg88 left a message on Markxvi's talk page to ask for a comment. Markxvi gave one, but on Philg88's talk page instead of here. Philg88 then reworded the first sentence of that paragraph, moved it to a less prominent place, and reposted it, but Markxvi reverted it again, still without an edit summary. What are we to do with this? Here's my analysis:

  1. The first thing I note is that before Philg88 reworded parts of it, the paragraph had been copied directly from Keyuan Zou's Law of the Sea in East Asia: Issues and Prospects, pp. 57-58. This is a copyright violation, so no matter what we do with the paragraph, it has to be reworded if it is to stay here.
  2. The paragraph was added on February 25[8] by an editor who on his/her next edit deleted the entire China section as "inaccurate poorly sourced info" and replaced it with a verbatim copy of China's statement from the website of China's embassy in the Philippines.[9]
  3. Zou's book looks like a reliable source, but it's only one source, and we should therefore present it as one claim among many, not as a statement of fact. I'm not even sure I agree with Zou's interpretation: Domingo Siazon apparently said that the dispute was new, not that the Philippines were making a claim for the first time.
  4. The paragraph is set up as a refutation, which runs against our obligation to respect a neutral point of view (NPOV).

Proposed solution: let's integrate the passage into the Philippine section more subtly, without presenting Zou's claim as fact, but also without dismissing it altogether, because Zou's book is clearly a reliable source, though only one among many. Madalibi (talk) 08:56, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

A sensible proposal - NPOV is the key here, lets leave the dispute in the South China Sea where it belongs and present a balanced view here. Zou's book is a reliable source as far as I can see, but it should not be given undue weight and, of course, should be cited in the correct context. ► Philg88 ◄ Star.pngtalk 09:07, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Those comments above (which I have not read due to being in a rush) caught me before I could re-add the material, so I'm not going to do that. I was going to add a cite of Zou, Keyuan (2005). Law of the Sea in East Asia: Issues And Prospects. Psychology Press. pp. 57–58. ISBN 978-0-415-35074-7/  (that work is already cited in the article) and probably some minor reworking of the prose. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 09:17, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
I just integrated the claim about the 1978 map and the citation from the Phil. Secretary of Foreign Affairs into the article.[10] I hope this will solve our little problem, but do let me know if you have better ideas. All best! Madalibi (talk) 12:14, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
I think the paragraph pertaining to the statement of the former Foreign Affairs Secretary stating that: "a new issue on overlapping claims between the Philippines and China" must be placed in the Chinese claims section. It does not deny nor affirm any claim on the side of the Philippines. Therefore, said paragraph cannot be considered as a Philippine claim and at the same time the statement is biased in favor of China. Since there is no history section in this page and the disputed line is somewhat biased in favor of the Chinese, it would be better if it will be placed in the China claim. Markxvi (talk) 12:09, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@Markxvi: The rationale behind the positioning of this paragraph has been explained to you several times but let me go over it once more. The contested paragraph:

The Philippine's bilateral dispute with China over the shoal began on April 30, 1997 when Filipino naval ships prevented Chinese boats from approaching the shoal.[1] On June 5 of that year, Domingo Siazon, who was then the Philippines Secretary of Foreign Affairs, testified in front of the Committee on Foreign Relations of the United States Senate that the Shoal was "a new issue on overlapping claims between the Philippines and China".[36]

This content indisputably relates primarily to the Philippines and furthermore contains a quote from their secretary of foreign affairs. That makes it pertinent to the Philippine claim section, not the Chinese section. ► Philg88 ◄ Star.pngtalk 12:48, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@Philg88: what I am trying to say is that the statement attributed to Secretary Domingo Siazon is self serving in favor of China. The reference cited/used is a Chinese which is no doubt that he will favor the claim of the Chinese government. Why don't we use this source Philippines+to+protest+Chinese+vessels'+presence+in+disputed+shoal.-a059332202 (just remove the space in the middle of the link) which was published in 2000 in Japan (Kyodo news) wherein in that news article, Domingo Siazon categorically said that: "Foreign Secretary Domingo Siazon told reporters, "On Scarborough Shoal, whenever (we) have intrusions by foreign vessels we protest...because Scarborough Shoal is still part of Philippine territory."" So the statement made in the article authored by Zou, Keyuan seems that it is quite contradictory to the position of the Foreign Affairs secretary. Moreover, the date of the said article earlier than that of Zou, Keyuan's written piece.Markxvi (talk) 13:21, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

I don't think that the statement is "self-serving in favor of China". The words are a matter of historical record spoken by an elected offical of the Philippine's government. Wikipedia does not cherry pick references in favour of any party, it records what happened in a neutral fashion. I would like to hear the view of some other editors on this so that we can move towards resolving the issue. ► Philg88 ◄ Star.pngtalk 13:33, 20 March 2014 (UTC)
Glad to see you here, Markxvi! And hi, Philg88! I also don't read this paragraph as serving China. It only says that the conflict between China and the Philippines over Scarborough Shoal started in 1997, not that the Philippines' claim on the Shoal dates from then. Zou's analysis is no longer there, so all that remains is a direct quote from Domingo Siazon, and it's clear that he didn't mean the Philippines was only starting to claim the Shoal. It is also clear from the rest of the section that the Philippines is trying to base its claim on a long history of mapping and exploration.
This being said, we could move the first sentence of that paragraph to the lede section, because the year when the conflict began seems very important, yet the lede doesn't mention it at all. We could also insert it before "Claims by China and Taiwan" as an intro to the "Sovereignty dispute" section. The beginning of the conflict concerns both countries, so I think it belongs best among other general statements. The Siazon quotation would be too detailed for the lede. Maybe we could move it to a footnote?
One thing is very important, though: we need to add more independent analysis to both the China and Philippines sections. This is what I did when I checked what a wide array of reliable sources – Chinese government sources, several Chinese scholars, and a leading western historian – to analyze China's claim about Guo Shoujing's "measurement of the four seas" at the beginning of the China section. I think careful readers will see that China's claim to have discovered the Shoal in the 13th century is not well supported by historical evidence. In other words, the China section should not necessarily support China, and neither should the Philippines support the Philippines. Wikipedia is not a soapbox for either China or the Philippines! So what do you all think? Madalibi (talk) 13:45, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

can i instead add something to that paragraph? Markxvi (talk) 14:02, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

@Markxvi – Of course! Just make sure it is not a refutation or a personal clarification. For example, it would be unnecessary to add a second quote by Siazon to clarify what he meant, because Siazon's point of view is not important enough to the conflict as a whole to quote him twice. Anyway just go ahead and we'll see what we can do! Madalibi (talk) 14:16, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

My problem is I don't know how to put citation. And I will just add the quotation I made with regard to Siazon's statement that Scarboroug is a Philippine territory. Markxvi (talk) 14:31, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

Markxvi – I really don't think it's necessary to add another quotation by Siazon. It's obvious that the Philippines is claiming the Shoal, and it's obvious that the country's Secretary of Foreign Affairs will say it does. In other words, the new quotation would add nothing we don't already know. Adding it in would also invite pro-Chinese editors to add various claims by Chinese heads of state that "Huangyan Island belongs to China". If you want to add something useful, maybe you could try to improve this paragraph:
The 1900 Treaty of Washington provided that any and all islands belonging to the Philippine archipelago, lying outside the lines described in Article III of the Treaty of Paris, were also ceded to the United States. This included Scarborough Shoal, which is outside the Treaty of Paris treaty lines. In effect, the Treaty of Washington amended the Treaty of Paris, so that the islands ceded by Spain to the U.S. included islands within and outside the Treaty of Paris treaty lines, so long as Spain had title or claim of title to the islands.
It lacks any kind of citation, and the wording is not clear. Casual readers will not know when or why these treaties were signed. It would be great if you clarify that and find a good reference for all these claims!
To add a footnote, just type <ref> </ref> and add your text in the middle.
Finally, I'm about to sign off for the night, so I may not be able to respond quickly to your questions. Madalibi (talk) 14:52, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

Why is it named so!?[edit]

There seems to be some a mis-match in why the Shoal is named the way it is. This article states it's because the ship Scarborough "was wrecked on one of its rocks". The linked article, however, makes no mention of this, and simply states that it was because it discovered them. Which is it? -LookingYourBest (talk) 13:36, 16 September 2014 (UTC)

Three sources were cited
Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 20:59, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
Thank you very much for your response. Within the third source, I can only see that it says he 'struck' the shoal. To me (and I'm not sea-farer) 'wreck' evokes an image of irreversible disaster. This is what caused confusion, as the Ship's article says it didn't founder for another 21 years, off Jamaica (and doesn't mention this wreck). -LookingYourBest (talk) 21:41, 16 September 2014 (UTC)
The article Scarborough (1782 ship), describes one of several ships with the name Scarborough. That particular ship foundered off Jamaica in 1805. That particular ship is listed on the WP disambiguation page at Scarborough#Ships. The disambiguation page HMS Scarborough lists some other ships with the same name. I think that the Scarborough Shoal article speaks of yet another ship with the same name -- a ship which does not have a Wikipedia article describing it and and which wrecked in 1784.
I'm no topical expert -- I'm just googling around for information since you have raised the issue. (Laurie and White) cited above said that a ship named Scarborough "ftruck" the "fhoal" on 12 September, 1784. Another source is Bill Hayton (2014). The South China Sea: The Struggle for Power in Asia. Yale University Press. pp. 40, 272 (note 17). ISBN 978-0-300-18954-4.  This says "One notable failure gave its name to the Scarborough Shoal, after the British ship wrecked upon it on 12 September, 1748." That adds to the confusion, though -- 1784 vs. 1748. That book saying 1748 cites another book which is not previewable online: David John Hancox; John Robert Victor Prescott (1999). Secret Hydrographic Surveys in the Spratly Islands. Asean Academic. ISBN 978-1-901919-08-0.  I'll google some more, but may not find anything useful. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 01:14, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
Just chiming in, those aren't supposed to be "f"s in "ftruck the fhoal", they're Long s (ſ) which were traditionally used in English and quite widespread throughout older literature (e.g. A Midſommer Nights Dreame) to distinguish long s sounds from short s ("s") sounds. Modern OCR software often misread them as "f"s. --benlisquareTCE 04:00, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
I did wonder if it was simply that it was linking to the wrong article, but the dates of the ship's operations match up, and I didn't think they'd have more that one Scarborough at a time. Although that one has no mention of "HMS" in its name. -LookingYourBest (talk) 08:03, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
The more I 'research' this, the more it seems that it's not the same ship this page links to, and that the Scarborough (1782 ship) page is also incorrect. Looking at the ships routes and dates on those routes, it would make no sense that it would stumble across a shoal in the South China Sea. Her first voyage to that area was in 1788 whereas the ship in question hit the shoal 4 years earlier. To FURTHER complicate things Second Thomas Shoal mentions a HMS Scarborough with a different Captain / Master (which through his name, makes more sense) ... BUT this ship isn't listed on the HMS Scarborough disambig page AND the reference seems to point back to Scarborough (ship) NOT any HMS. "In another moment down went Alice after it, never once considering how in the world she was to get out again." -LookingYourBest (talk) 09:58, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
A source from an associated page seems to say the shoal was named later, for the ship by [[11]]. Cinderellas of the Empire: towards a history of Kiribati and Tuvalu. Australian National University Press. 1982. ISBN 982-02-0335-X. Retrieved 2009-10-14.  Unknown parameter |Author= ignored (|author= suggested) (help) -LookingYourBest (talk) 10:31, 17 September 2014 (UTC)
The best source is from Diary of Colonel Bayly; I have repaired the link. STSC (talk) 11:13, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Random additional opinion, in long and short versions:

Long versionThe First Fleet Scarborough was built in 1782 and was in private service for four years until being hired for the First Fleet. Her owners, the Hopper brothers from Yorkshire, certainly traded in tea from China - in fact Scarborough was sent there directly after depositing her convicts in Port Jackson in 1788 (this is the voyage referenced in the footnote on p.610 of The Oriental Navigator mentioned above, and this is certainly this Scarborough as it mentions her 1786-91 master, John Marshall). So - it is feasible that the First Fleet Scarborough sighted or even struck (but wasn't wrecked on) the Scarborough shoals in 1784. On the other hand:

  • 'Scarborough was a common ship name, reflecting in this instance simply the port in which she was constructed. Unlike HMS's, merchant ship names routinely overlapped so there could easily have been multiple Scarborough's at sea at any time;
  • There was no really useful register of British shipping at the time (the General Register and Record Office of Shipping and Seamen was only set up in 1783), so records are hard to find; and
  • The convict transport Scarborough certainly wasn't wrecked on the shoals. And she certainly wasn't there in 1748, as some sources suggest. Both "wrecked" and "1748" may be misprints in the sources, or they may point to an entirely different ship.
  • It's also worth remembering that there was nothing notable about the convict transport Scarborough at the time, so no particular reason why a shoal would be named in her honour unless she just happened to be the first European ship to pass by.

Short version - while its possible, or even likely, that the 1784 Scarborough is the same as the 1788 Scarborough, we don't presently have the sources to be entirely sure and in any case she wasn't wrecked there. The thing that would help: if we can match the Master D'Auvergne, mentioned in "the Oriental Navigator" p.454 in connection to the Scarborough that was trading in Chinese waters in 1784 with the ship that went to Australia in 1788. Unlikely, but there might be something in one of the maritime journals somewhere. Also worth asking at WP:SHIPS, which I'll do tomorrow unless anyone beats me to it. Euryalus (talk) 14:00, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

  • Hi Euryalus, as you now know, but others may not, the vessel in question appears to be the East Indiaman Scarborough. She was under the command of Captain Philip D'Auvergne and on her third voyage for the EIC when she struck the rocks on 12 September 1748. It took a while, but she came free and sailed on to China. D'Auvergne then sailed her on a fourth voyage. (Philip D'Auvergne was of a Jersey family, but I don't know his relationship, if any, to Philippe D'Auvergne, also of Jersey, but born some 30 years later. I am working up an article on Scarborough. For a source on the vessel see the National Archives (United Kingdom),[12]. Regards, Acad Ronin (talk) 22:29, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
    • Yep, am happy this is resolved as it's been annoying me since last year when it became fairly clear the Scarborough Reef Scarborough was not the First Fleet ship as originally stated in this article. I found a passing reference to D'Auvergne in a book on Arthur Phillip, which put him in chronological context but wasn't enough to go any further and identify this or any other vessel. After which, no leads. So, thanks for finding and including an actual supportable source and detail so this can be cleared up at last. -- Euryalus (talk) 22:49, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Pentang Shoal, etc.[edit]

This edit, which took issue with and removed an assertion sayingg "The reef is currently administered by People's Republic of China, ...", caught my eye. The edit summary said, "Rv, article merely mentions in throwaway line on pg 74 that China claims and "administrates" the shoal as part of Hainan Province (and previously Guangdong Province, from the related footnote".

The "article" referred to is [13], the cite of which was also removed. That article is undated but, from the advert at the end, it appears to be 1999ish. Somewhat more recent is this 2012 Philstar article which says in part, "On Wednesday, the DFA summoned China’s ambassador and presented her a diplomatic note in which the Philippines protested Beijng’s establishment of a new 'prefectural-level' City of Sansha to administer three disputed islands in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) and future development of the islands." and quotes the Heritage Foundation’s research fellow on Chinese political and security affairs as saying, "“Even more disturbing is that this measure [referring to 'decision to begin regular naval patrols, however – and especially "combat-ready (zhanbei)" ones'] seems to be part of a larger Chinese effort to exercise full sovereignty over the area”. This seems to me to be a bit more weighty than an throwaway line.

Just a passing comment. The superseded content which said "The reef is currently administered ..." and cited an apparent 1999ish article in support did seem to have WP:DATED problems. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 12:42, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

The 1900 Treaty of Washington included Scarborough Shoal?[edit]

I've added a citation request for the following statement, based on my knowledge, the 1900 Treat of Washing didn't include the Scarborough Shoal.

This (the 1900 Treaty of Washington) included Scarborough Shoal[citation needed]

Toto11zi (talk) 06:26, 20 October 2015 (UTC)

I've added a supporting cite of a news article report of an assertion by Jay Bongbacal, Director of the University of the Philippines Institute for Maritime Affairs & Law of the Sea, that the Treaty of Washington (1900) did result in cession of Scarborough Shoal from Spain to the U.S. The reasoning behind the assertion is explained in the source I've cited. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 00:38, 21 October 2015 (UTC)
News article is not always a reliable source though

Toto11zi (talk) 04:33, 22 October 2015 (UTC)

I've added the following reliable source

Many analysts consider that The 1900 Treaty of Washington concerned only the islands of Sibutu and Cagayan de Sulu.

Actual quote: "Many analysts consider, in a restrictive manner, that this treaty concerned only the islands of Sibutu and Cagayan de Sulu."

Source: Geopolitics of Scarborough Shoal, François-Xavier Bonnet, page 11

PDF link:

Toto11zi (talk) 04:46, 22 October 2015 (UTC)

When you use the term "reliable source" in a discussion on WP, please use it in the sense of WP:RS. That newspaper article is probably a reliable source to support what it reports that Jay Batongbacal, Director of the University of the Philippines Institute for Maritime Affairs & Law of the Sea, said. I didn't put it in those terms earlier because we were not earlier in the position of reporting differences between sources (and see WP:DUE); I've now done that. I tried to look at the source you cited, but it came up as a dead link for me and I couldn't find a viewable copy at I've tagged it {{dead link}} for now and have also edited your assertion that "many" sources take that viewpoint to assert that "some" do. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 06:17, 22 October 2015 (UTC)
The paper is in,, Saved 3 times between May 18, 2014 and September 27, 2015, I don't know why you're not able to download that 42-page paper. I will spend some time on this particular paragraph for the next few days, let's try to discuss and fix the paragraph, by the way, I don't know why you changed "many" to "some"? Can we preserve what's specified in François-Xavier Bonnet's paper? Probably you haven't read the paper. Could you double check if you can download the paper? Try or to search for the paper. Toto11zi (talk) 06:58, 22 October 2015 (UTC)
────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────(added) I don't know what my earlier problem accessing your cited source was, but I've now been able to look at it. My error changing "many" to "some". As the source does say "many analysts", I've changed that back. I do note, though, that the paper asserts that those analysts are wrong (at least that's the way I read it). Yes, this paragraph needs some more wordsmithing. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 07:59, 22 October 2015 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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1900 Treaty of Washington[edit]

The following paragraph gives minority view as much of or as detailed a description as more widely held view, it violates POV, if you have objection to change this paragraph, please discuss here:

The 1900 Treaty of Washington provided that any and all islands belonging to the Philippine archipelago, lying outside the lines described in Article III of the Treaty of Paris, were also ceded to the United States. In effect, the Treaty of Washington amended the Treaty of Paris, so that the islands ceded by Spain to the U.S. included islands within and outside the Treaty of Paris treaty lines, so long as Spain had title or claim of title to the islands. The Director of the University of the Philippines Institute for Maritime Affairs & Law of the Sea has asserted that this includes Scarborough Shoal, which is outside the Treaty of Paris treaty lines.[36] Many analysts consider that the 1900 Treaty of Washington concerned only the islands of Sibutu and Cagayan de Sulu.[37]

Toto11zi (talk) 03:31, 9 June 2016 (UTC)

It looks to me as if, unless the cite supported assertion by the Director of the University of the Philippines Institute for Maritime Affairs & Law of the Sea mentioned above is a WP:FRINGE view, this edit removing mention of the assertion and the supporting cite is contrary to WP:DUE. Wtmitchell (talk) (earlier Boracay Bill) 05:00, 9 June 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for pointing out WP:FRINGE which is what I meant. That assertion doesn't match the cite closely, but the idea and the same cite are still maintained. The problem with the original text was about minority view and majority view, but obviously there's too much description for the minority view based on François-Xavier Bonnet's published paper. Toto11zi (talk) 05:42, 9 June 2016 (UTC)

Various topics reflecting the '16 July international-tribunal decision at The Hague[edit]

   Don't hesitate to start a new talk section with heading like

 == cephalopods unique to Sc. Sh. ==

at the bottom of this talk page, if you **aren't directly concerned** with matters topics related to the Hague ruling's effects on our coverage of the topic!
--Jerzyt 21:57, 12 July 2016 (UTC)

My reversion of three edits[edit]

   I reverted, about half an hour ago before completing the edit that began this second-level talk section, the following three edits:

  • (cur | prev) 12 July 2016 (talk | block)‎ . . (34,734 bytes) (-277)‎ . . (→‎Activities in the surrounding area: Removed irrelevant information with unrelated reference.) (undo)
  • (cur | prev) 15:16, 12 July 2016 Emilio.Ramon.Isla (talk | contribs | block)‎ . . (35,011 bytes) (-1,162)‎ . . (An international tribunal in The Hague ruled in favor of the Philippines in a maritime dispute Tuesday, concluding China has no legal basis to claim historic rights to the bulk of the South China Sea.) (undo | thank) (Tag: Visual edit)
  • (cur | prev) 14:07, 12 July 2016‎ (talk | block)‎ . . (36,173 bytes) (-39)‎ . . (→‎EEZ) (undo)

(If you haven't tried this exercise before, i cut and pasted from the history page, and for the moment it looks like these three edit-history entries are automatically nicely linked, but they weren't, and i'm relinking -- "by hand" (and by trial and error bcz after you've once learned how it's actually less boring than rereading the documentation) to some of the text to the WP pages in question, for your convenience, which is a big part of why this edit -- see below for the time stamp of my save -- is so slow in being added.)
   (Well, sorry, i made that sound like i was saving immediately after getting the above aids straight in my edit box, to provide some insight about what, but i got distracted three or more hours ago, without having saved the previous 'graphs and bullet points.)
Jerzyt 06:35, 13 July 2016 (UTC)

   Yes, everyone can edit WP, but not all edits deserve the same degree of patience and forbearance, and i've exercised some reasonably experienced judgement in deciding those three need reversion for discarding material that should be reworded to reflect verifiable changes to the relevance of the new decision to the overall history of arguments that (still!) were made in the past, even tho more may need to be said about them in light of the recent ruling. (I am for now neglecting other edits made since the court decision but prior to these three, not because those are less troubled than these three, but bcz i can't tackle the whole post-decision body of work (immediately, and/or alone)).
Jerzyt 06:35, 13 July 2016 (UTC)

Noting more recent, more constructive edits[edit]

   I'm less panicked by others' edits of the last 8.5 hours (8.5, sheesh!), tho i still want to look back to see if other, still earlier edits since the ruling jettisoned material that should be modified rather than discarded.
--Jerzyt 07:11, 13 July 2016 (UTC)

Yes, the Filipinos are directly concerned since a whole lotof mTerials on the top of the page were all about the Chinese claiming all of our shoals lately.. The country spent a whole lot of money and chose the best lawyer around to defend our country and its territories.. A townful of officials went to the Arbitral Court to fight for our country and all we get from Wikipedia is the bottom page claims about it when all of Chinese claims are on the top and some of them in bold letters.. These Chinese got all too bold all of a suden when the American bases left on June 10,1991when Mt. Pinatubo erupted. The Americans evacuated in a hurry together with the town folks and let go of their bases when at that time, it was in question if the lease will continue.. Bebe0114 (talk) 02:46, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

They are talking there about putting their flag in 1980.. That can not be because US CARRIERS AND SUBMARINES are there until theMt. Pinatubo erupted.. Filipinos and Americans alike holds their exercises there.. There is no way they can come an inch close to them.. All their lies are flying all over the place.. All of a sudden a whole lot of maps showed up, threw some artifacts on the sea and all those fronm them.. Their dates are not even adding up just as much lie they are putting out there..

There!s no way they can come clise there because tons of US ships and carriers are parked and sailing all around there.

Bebe0114 (talk) 02:56, 8 November 2016 (UTC)

Edit request[edit]

This may seem a bit “wrong version“ after the protection was imposed, but immediately before the protection two edits were made by brand new account Wocaonima1 to re-introduce errors introduced by previous IP and new accounts – it is not called 'Huangyan Island' and is not an island - as well as re-instert an unsourced badly written, POV and barely relevant addition to the 2016 ruling section. Can they be undone--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 07:52, 16 July 2016 (UTC)

  • Not done @JohnBlackburne: Please discuss with the other editors what changes you think should be made. Once there's a consensus on which version is the "right" version, use the edit request template to request that the "right" version be implemented. No administrator is going to continue the edit war after full protection was placed on the article. If these edits are incorrect, it should be very easy to obtain such consensus using the methods at WP:Dispute resolution. ~ Rob13Talk 22:15, 16 July 2016 (UTC)

Edit protection[edit]

The newly added information is from the United Nations and the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which could be found on their websites. References can be found from "" and "". These statements are very important, because the previous information in the section of "2016 ruling" purposely mislead the audience by mentioning UNCLOS, implying it is endorsed by the United Nations. Due to the same reason, the United Nations and the International Court of Justice (ICJ) immediately issue the statements to stress separation from the ruling. Therefore, we conclude the information is necessary to protect the audience from biased and purposely misleading information. Multiple accounts, same user from Philippines, try to deny the truth by repeatedly deleting these statements.Here, protection is needed to guarantee the truth and objectiveness. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wocaonima1 (talkcontribs) 20:04, 16 July 2016 (UTC)

As noted below that is not relevant. The article does not say the arbitration was done or endorsed by the UN. UNCLOS is an international agreement, with its own rules for arbitration and dispute resolution. Anyone who does not know about it can follow the link to UNCLOS, it is not misleading and does not need correcting.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 04:59, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

This arbitration is illegal and invalid, which clearly violates the UNCLOS. Ruling of South China Sea Dispute is not supported by the United Nations. The arbitration itself is a farce, and not accepted by many countries. In order to mislead the public, the Hague-based arbitration claims itself as either Hague Court or UNCLOS court. Indeed, it has its own right to claim anything, however, the ruling is invalid, and does not get international recognition. Taken together, it is necessary and important to tell the public the truth and avoid biased misleading information. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wocaonima1 (talkcontribs) 05:20, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

Edit request: use of consistent names[edit]

The "Geography" section was recently modified to refer to the article's subject as "Huangyan Island" and "island" instead of "Scarborough Shoal" and "shoal". Please see the changes embedded in this edit. This should be changed back to the status quo ante so that the neutral internationally-recognized name "Scarborough Shoal" and type "shoal" is used instead of the Chinese-POV name of "Huangyan Island" and type "island". This will also make it consistent with the rest of the article, where the subject is referred to as a shoal and named as "Scarborough Shoal". —seav (talk) 01:35, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

Yes, this was part of my request above. Huangyan Island is neither the common name nor correct. It is not an Island in English. I don’t know if that is a bad translation or a POV assertion to support China’s claim to the whole South China Sea, but it is simply wrong in either case.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 01:45, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
Done — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 08:00, 18 July 2016 (UTC)

Edit request: removal of irrelevant unsourced passage[edit]

In the "2016 ruling" section, the following passage was recently added:

However, United Nations clearly states that this arbitration tribunal is not affiliated with UN. Meanwhile, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) wishes to draw the attention of the media and the public to the fact that the Award in the South China Sea Arbitration (The Republic of the Philippines v. The People’s Republic of China) was issued by an Arbitral Tribunal acting with the secretarial assistance of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA). The relevant information can be found on the PCA’s website ( The ICJ, which is a totally distinct institution, has had no involvement in the above mentioned case and, for that reason, there is no information about it on the ICJ’s website.

First, this passage is unreferenced. Second, the fact that the PCA is separate from the UN and not related to the ICJ is not relevant to the article. As long as we make it clear that the arbitration case (which involved the status of Scarborough Shoal) is administratively handled by the PCA, then the text preceding the above passage should suffice. —seav (talk) 01:43, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

Yes, this paragraph is unnecessary. UNCLOS is not administered by the UN or the ICJ, it has its own rules for arbitration. These are not less important or less valid, as the quoted paragraph implies. They are part of UNCLOS, which means they are accepted by all countries that have ratified the treaty. But there is no need to say any of that: anyone curious about UNCLOS can follow the link, where there is comprehensive information on it.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 05:05, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

UNCLOS only suggests a “special arbitral tribunal” constituted for certain categories of disputes (established under Annex VIII of UNCLOS) could be accepted. However, UNCLOS never endorse this particular arbitration. In addition, don't automatically think it is part of UNCLOS, which is misleading. Please also do some research on PCA, you will know how ridiculous the so-called international court is. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wocaonima1 (talkcontribs) 05:26, 17 July 2016 (UTC)

In order to end this argument and support the claim that the additional information is necessary, I would like to give a simple example. For instance, Costco (PCA) can sell iphones (interpretation of UNCLOS), which are authorized by the Apple company (the United Nations and UNCLOS). However, it does not mean when customers (the Philippines) get a bad Samsung Galaxy (illegal claims), they can ask the board of directors (China) from Apple company to reimburse them, just because the Apple agreed that Costco can sell iphones, so all phones must be Apple products. The customers forget that the Apple has its own official stores: the Apple Store (the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea and the International Court of Justice in The Hague). Unfortunately, the bad Samsung Galaxy (illegal claims) is not purchased from official stores. It will be natural that the Apple issues statements that Costco (PCA) is not part of the Apple company (the United Nations and UNCLOS) , and stress the separation from the bad products. It will be misleading to hide such information from the public, because not everyone knows Costco not only sells iphones, but also bad Samsung Galaxys. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Wocaonima1 (talkcontribs) 07:30, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
I am not saying that we completely remove the information that PCA ≠ ICJ from Wikipedia. I am suggesting that this information is not relevant to the article Scarborough Shoal. By all means, add the information to the articles on Permanent Court of Arbitration, International Court of Justice, and Philippines v. China, but not on Scarborough Shoal. Again, this passage is irrelevant to the present article. —seav (talk) 14:50, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
i disagree. If you think it is unnecessary, why not delete the whole section of "2016 ruling". As you said, people can read the information from Philippines v. China, but not Scarborough Shoal. I insist that the audience have the rights to know this issue from various perspectives. Let they know all, and decide what they believe.— Preceding unsigned comment added by Wocaonima1 (talkcontribs) 19:06, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
The arbitration is part of UNCLOS. However, the provisions relating to adjudication and arbitration within UNCLOS are spread and rather complex. In general, parties are supposed to settle their disputes peacefully and among themselves (UNCLOS, Part XV, Section I). However, where no settlement is the dispute can be submitted to a court or tribunal (Section II art. 286). Art. 287 provides for the possibility of a party to submit what kind of procedure it prefers:
  1. the ICJ;
  2. the ITLOS;
  3. an arbitral tribunal ex ANNEX VII;
  4. a special arbitral tribunal ex ANNEX VIII.
If no preference is stated or if both parties opted for a different procedure, than procedure 3 is used i.e. an arbitral tribunal ex ANNEX VII. Furthermore, it is not necessary for both parties to agree to instigate proceedings under UNCLOS. Art. 286 clearly states that:
"Subject to section 3, any dispute concerning the interpretation or application of this Convention shall, where no settlement has been reached by recourse to section 1, be submitted at the request of any party to the dispute to the court or tribunal having jurisdiction under this section."
I.e. any party can unilaterally initiate proceedings against another UNCLOS treaty party. Art. 286 means among other things that no party can unilaterally block adjudication or arbitration seeked by another party against it and the court or tribunal itself is competent to rule whether it has jurisdiction.
The Philippines v. China arbitration, concerns an arbitral tribunal constituted under ANNEX VII. As such, its arbitration forms part of the UNCLOS scheme. However, the arbitrators who determine the award are neither part of the UN nor of UNCLOS. Instead, every country signed UNCLOS can designate four persons to serve as arbitrators to be included on a list held by the UNSG. Normally, under ANNEX VII proceedings each party is allowed to choose one out of five arbitrators to serve on the case (ANNEX VII art. 2 and 3). So where does the PCA fit in? The arbitral tribunal needs facilities to hold its hearings and everything associated with it. The PCA, not being a court itself, provides these services (the PCA itself is indeed not part of the UN and was formed at the first Hague Peace Conference of 1899). To date it has provided administrative services in all but one ANNEX VII case.
Hence, I agree with seav and JohnBlackburne that the section is superfluous and can be deleted. However, the ICJ did put this statement on their website. Probably, because some people thought it had issued the ruling (either because the ICJ houses in the same building as the PCA or because of the media or who knows why). I also respectfully disagree with Wocaonima1 because UNCLOS adjudication and arbitration works differently than he purported it to be.
TL;DR. The tribunal is based on UNCLOS, specifically ANNEX VII. The proceedings can be initiated by one party and the other part is unable to block the proceedings, the tribunal itself has the power to establish whether it has jurisdiction. The PCA is only there to provide administrative services and is not in any other way involved. Regards, Perudotes (talk) 23:05, 17 July 2016 (UTC)
  • So the request is to remove that paragraph, correct? (You can ping me with the answer.) Katietalk 15:34, 19 July 2016 (UTC)
    I've removed it. Hope this is correct. — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 20:34, 19 July 2016 (UTC)

I agree on what Wicaonima was saying.. International Court Ruling as such regarding Scarborough is very material to be read by the whole world especially the Peopke of tvthe Philippines.. It was a longbattle won.. Freedom..

There's so much Chinese edits on there already.. Bebe0114 (talk) 17:53, 10 November 2016 (UTC)