The New York  Times reported on Monday that recent satellite photos show China building aircraft hangars on its holding in the Spratly islands.

The photos were taken in July, there were no military aircraft seen but the hangars have room for any fighter jet in the Chinese air force. The Times cited an analysis of the photos by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) think tank.

As of the moment, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan, Brunei and China are claiming the territory.

New York Times: China militarizing disputed islands
Photo by CSIS
The hangars were constructed on Fiery Cross, Subi and Mischief Reefs, part of the Spratly Islands. China claims most of the South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year.

The hangars all show signs of structural strengthening, CSIS said.

"They are far thicker than you would build for any civilian purpose," Gregory Poling, director of CSIS's Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative, told the Times. "They're reinforced to take a strike." MJM

Source: ABS-CBN News

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