Chinese Tourist Vessel Heading Toward Disputed Islands

By Curious

A cruise vessel with Chinese tourists onboard has embarked on a voyage to the Paracels, a group of islands in the South China Sea, which are claimed by both China and Vietnam. The cruise vessel left the coast of mainland China on Sunday regardless protests against any such voyage by the Vietnamese government in early April.
Vietnam and China have long disputed sovereignty over the Paracels islands. China is also competing with other Southeast Asian nations to lay claim to other parts of the South China Sea, notably the Spratly Islands.
The National Border Committee of Vietnam under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had filed a protest on 5th of April, 2013 against the plans for the cruise, arguing that Vietnam had “incontestable” sovereignty over the Paracels and Spratlys islands. China’s territorial claims have come under closer scrutiny recently as the country professionals its military strength more prominently. This month, Chinese soldiers set up camp inside the remote Ladakh region of northern India, Indian authorities reported. Is is unclear why the soldiers made that move.