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China warns of rampant illegal wrecking in South China Sea


18:47, December 09, 2011

BEIJING, Dec. 9 (Xinhua) -- Cultural relics on shipwrecks under the South China Sea have become threatened by rampant illegal wrecking in recent years, said a senior heritage conservation official here Friday.

Valuable relics found on ancient shipwrecks have been popular on the black market, which has led to more illegal wrecking operations, said Shan Jixiang, head of the State Administration of Cultural Heritage (SACH), at a meeting held with the State Oceanic Administration (SOA) on how to protect underwater cultural relics.

The trend for illegal wrecking in the South China Sea started in the 1970s, when mostly foreign commercial vessels were the culprits.

In recent years, authorities have found organized illegal wrecking groups as well as individual fishermen and foreign ships involved in the practice, Shan said.

In addition, the exploitation of sand and the reclaiming of land along the coast has also endangered the safety of heritage items under the water, he said.

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elee at 2011-12-10183.39.47.*
Say nothing more but to place surveillances and naval patrols in the entire region of South China Sea is the correct answer. Otherwise, all these are becoming diehard habits of all parties, whether legally right or wrong.

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