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China Maritime Day: Historical documents back China’s South China Sea claims

China marks its National Maritime Day today. On July 11 more than six hundred years ago, the Ming Dynasty navigator Zheng He set sail for his first long-distance voyage to the West Pacific and the Indian Ocean. His nautical charts and other maps show China’s historical claims to the South China Sea. The Nautical Charts of Zheng He drawn in the 15th Century is the oldest collection of nautical maps in the world.

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