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Maritime Disputes in Southeast Asia: Conflict Resolution in a Globalised World

Hai Le
Polish Academy of Science


Roundtable Abstract

Water disputes in Southeast Asian Sea (also known as East and South China Seas) gradually move into the spotlight of the regional geo-political stage. The death of a Taiwaness fisherman caused by the Filippinian police led to an economical confrontation between the two countries. A huge amount from the GDP of the South East Asian nations went into weapons contracts with Russia, Ukraine, Japan, and the USA. A constant effort in dyplomacy is seen through the ASEAN meetings in order to impose the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea on China. Phillipines brought the dispute over the Scarborough Shoal (also known as Huanguan Island) to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea while the Chinese government rejected it. Vietnam starts to talk about a military partnership with the former enemy USA in order to balance the Chinese activities on its East Sea. In the age of globalisation, regional conflict is transcended to remote regions through diasporas. The Chinese community in Poland demonstrated in front of the Japanese embassy in Warsaw over the Senkaku (also known as Diaoyu or Tiaoyutai) dispute. The Vietnamese community in the UK protested against the Chinese invasion of the Spratlys and Paracels in front of the Chinese embassy in London. The problem urgently requires an academic attention from different disciplines. Therefore, in co-operation with the Centrum for Studies of Poland-Asia, dr Artur Koscianski from the Polish Academy of Science and I have organised panel-discusion on Sea Conflicts on the West Coasts of the Pacific Ocean in April 2013. Invited experts in international laws, security studies, sociology, politics and diaspora studies discussed the matter and together published a book in Polish. A panel at Oxford SEA Studies Symposium 2014 will offer a great chance for all 7 authors to learn about other approaches and to share knowledge with international scholars and decision-makers.


  • Dr Lê Thanh Hải (Phương Đông)
  • Paweł Behrendt (Poland Asia Research Center)
  • Piotr Gadzinowski (former Polish MP, journalist)