Sovereignty disputes over the Paracel Islands and the Spratly Islands in the Southeast Asia Sea (the South China Sea) have remained unresolved for nearly a century. Over the years, the United Nations has received many complaints against China from Southeast Asian countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam.
In March of 2010, responding to a petition of more than 10,000 people worldwide, the National Geographic Society, one of the world's most respected and renowned map makers, removed the label "China" at the Paracel Islands from its maps in order to reflect both the international community's position and the organization's publicized policy of neutrality.
In May 2010, a campaign was launched to call on the international community to change the name "South China Sea" to "Southeast Asia Sea". The petition is still ongoing and has gained support from more than 50,000 people in more than 100 countries.
In June 2011, the Philippines renamed South China Sea as the West Philippine Sea to strengthen the country's claim on the contested areas.
In the summer of 2011, global Vietnamese and Filipinos staged waves of protests against China's aggression and expansionism in the Southeast Asia Sea (South China Sea). In recent years, a series of summits and conferences have been held in Bali, Hanoi, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, New York, Singapore, Washington DC, and recently in Phnom Penh, in order to confront China's baseless and belligerent claims, including its “nine-dotted line,” the demarcation that claims almost the entire Southeast Asia Sea (South China Sea).
Based on its absurd claims, the Chinese Communist Party and its government have ordered their naval forces to constantly terrorize vessels of Southeast Asian countries and the international community navigating these waters as well as to rob, capture, and murder Vietnamese fishermen.
It is a fact that those islands located in the Southeast Asia Sea (South China Sea) have never been recognized by the Southeast Asian countries and international community as part of Chinese territories.
It is a fact that to this date the United Nations has classified the Paracel Islands as “disputed islands” and has never confirmed them to belong to China.
It is a fact that the United Nations, the international community, and the Southeast Asian countries and their 600 million people have never recognized the nine-dotted line maps. These maps merely reflect a hegemony and expansionist policy of the Chinese Communist Party and its government in the region.
Here are the concerns:
1) When submitting the queries "Paracel Islands" and "Spratly Islands" to the Google Maps, it displays "Paracel Islands, China" and "Spratly Islands, China" respectively, which clearly indicates that the islands belong to China despite the fact that they are not.
2) When submitting the queries "South China Sea" and "Paracel Islands" in English or Chinese to the Chinese Google Maps, it displays the nine-dotted line that covers almost the entire Southeast Asia Sea (South China Sea), whereas the U.S. Google Maps does not when the same queries are requested.
Because of these concerns, we believe Google Maps is unintentionally misleading the public about these disputed islands and the sea.
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