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China's new maritime law fines ships that violate its waters

Legal change beefs up Beijing's policing in East China and South China seas

A Chinese patrol ship sails through the East China Sea in this photo provided by the Japan Coast Guard.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- China on Thursday passed a law that imposes fines on foreign-flagged vessels for sailing in waters it claims as its own, adding more enforcement powers to its growing maritime presence.

The National People's Congress standing committee voted in favor of an amended Maritime Traffic Safety Law, which is meant to improve maritime traffic conditions and security, according to state-run Xinhua News Agency.

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