Xisha to be opened to tourism


China says it will open up a group of disputed islands in the South China Sea to tourism.

Analysts say the move appears to be an attempt to demonstrate Chinese sovereignty over the potentially oil-rich islands, known in China as Xisha and as the Paracel islands elsewhere.

Chinese state media said people will be allowed to travel on cruise ships to the uninhabited islands, which are also claimed by Vietnam but currently administered by China's Hainan province.

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