China has been gradually expanding its naval and air presence in the disputed waters of the South China Sea. The results so far can be seen in this interactive map developed by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Its neighbors, including Vietnam, the Philippines, China and now even Malaysia have protested China’s expansion into what they say are international waters. Several nations lay claim to the Spratly Islands, and some also military bases there. But China has been especially aggressive recently in establishing a military presence on them.
China has also built an airstrip in the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, leading to tensions with Japan and Taiwan, which also claim the islands as national territory, China has recently scolded the United States for its Naval and Air Force operations in the area.