19/7 Tass 74
KHABAROVSK, July 19 (Itar-Tass) — Governor of the Khabarovsk Territory Vyacheslav Shport has signed an order on the payment of compensations to all former owners of land on the Big Ussuri Island who lost their plots during the demarcation of the Russian-Chinese border in 2005, the government of the territory told Itar-Tass on Tuesday.
“According to estimates, 42.8 million roubles will be paid to the citizens – former owners of 58 plots of land on the island. Another 10.4 million roubles will be paid to the Zarya agricultural enterprise for lost acres, as part of its lands passed into the possession of the Chinese side after the demarcation of the border,” the territorial government noted.
The owners of many land plots on the island who had turned to courts before, have already received compensation. The territorial Property Relations Ministry will now conclude agreements with the rest of the ex-owners of the plots. Packages of all documents will be sent to the RF Ministry of Economy. The payments will also be made in accordance with court decisions.
Bolshoi Ussuriisky Island (or Heixiazi Island), is a sedimentary island at the confluence of the Ussuri and Amur rivers. It is divided between the People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Russia. It has an area of about 327 to 350 square km and is bounded closely by Yinlong Island (Tarabarov Island), and over ninety islets (in Chinese, Heixiazi may refer only to the large island or to the island group collectively). Its position at the confluence of the Amur and the Ussuri and right next to the major Russian city of Khabarovsk, has given it great strategic importance.
Until 2004, Bolshoi Ussuriisky Island was the site of a territorial dispute between China and Russia. The Soviet Union occupied Bolshoi Ussuriisky and Yinlong Islands in 1929, but this was not accepted by China. While Russia governed the islands as a part of the Khabarovsk Territory, China claimed them as a part of Fuyuan County, Heilongjiang province; the easternmost part of China.
On October 14, 2004, the Complementary Agreement between the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation on the Eastern Section of the China-Russia Boundary was signed, in which Russia agreed to relinquish control over Yinlong Island and around half of Bolshoi Ussuriisky. About 170 square kilometres of Bolshoi Ussuriisky was transferred to China, while the rest will remain in Russia’s jurisdiction. In return, China agreed to drop all territorial claims to the remainder of Bolshoi Ussuriisky kept by Russia.
The total area of these territories in the Khabarovsk region is approximately 340 square kilometres. The two sections make up less than two percent of the Russian-Chinese border, which stretches to some 4,300 kilometres and is one of the longest land frontiers on the planet.
In 2005, the Russian Duma and the Chinese National People’s Congress approved the agreement. On July 21, 2008, an agreement was signed in Beijing by the Chinese and Russian Foreign Ministers, that finalized the border demarcation and formally ended negotiations. Under the agreement, Russia would transfer approximately 174 square km of territory to China. The transfer took place on October 14, 2008. The area being transferred to China is largely uninhabited.