Day after day new postage stamps are issued depicting a variety of topics. Here are some examples of recently-issued stamps featuring a variety of topics.
Australia released a series of stamps on the subject of equestrianism. Cross-country, Pony Club, Show Jumping, Dressage and Polocrosse events are included.
The Marshall Islands and Ivory Coast have also released stamps with a horse theme, both countries celebrating “The Year of the Horse.”
And China has produced a stamp sheet which uses a theme similar to that previously used by Holland under the title “Beautiful Netherlands”. The set colourfully shows attractive locations in that vast land such as: Xiapu Beaches, Zhangjiajie Tianzi Mountain, Qilian Yu – Sansha, Panjin Red Beach, Longsheng Terraced Fields and Xinghua Duotian.
When researching subjects for articles, you often discover extra interesting facts and such is the case with the Chinese stamp sheet.
The stamp (top right of the sheet) features the island group Qilian Yu – Sansha (Seven Sisters). And last year the release of the stamp by China led to a protest by a Vietnamese philately group, the Viet Stamp Club (VSC), part of the Ho Chi Minh City Stamp Association, which objected on the grounds that the stamp falsely and illegally depicts islands in Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) Archipelago, which they claim China has illegally occupied since 1974.
The Viet Stamp Club noted that the China Post had done something similar in 2004 when it issued a set of stamps also featuring Vietnam’s Hoang Sa. China and four ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) members Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei are embroiled in sovereignty disputes over the resource-rich East Sea, internationally known as the South China Sea, with China being the biggest claimant.
China has taken many actions to stake its claims, including proclaiming a unilateral 11-week seasonal fishing ban in the waters surrounding Hoang Sa and sending a massive fishing fleet to Truong Sa in May last year. Vietnam has repeatedly protested against Chinese actions. Among its latest countermoves was an exhibition in Ha Tinh Province from, which displayed historical documents and maps that prove the two archipelagoes belong to Vietnam.
Among the exhibits were three atlases published in 1908, 1919 and 1933 with maps created by cartographers from China’s Qing Dynasty in 1906 that show the southernmost point of China as Hainan Island, clearly showing that Hoang Sa and Truong Sa lay outside China’s borders.
The stamp bottom right on the stamp sheet shows the Xinghua Duotian wetland agro-system. It is a typical example of wetland agro-system, known for its indigenous management of low-lying land in bodies of water and the splendid landscape created by miles of “duotian” (elevated pieces of field) above water which is rarely seen in the world. Duotian are islets of different size created by ancestors of local people over 1000 years ago to meet their subsistence needs. They were built in swamps by people digging and piling muddy soil together, turning unfarmable wetlands into fertile fields. Crops grow on these raised plots above water and fish or waterfowl swim in water around them. It is a unique way to use available land and soil resources and it offers local people not only freedom from floods but also sustained livelihood.
And, after territorial disputes, we move on to New Caledonia. Their recent issue is a stamp displaying a bonsai tree. The definition of the Japanese word bonsai is the art of growing dwarfed, ornamentally shaped trees or shrubs in small shallow pots or trays.
In September Russia, as part of a continuing series, issued these stamps with the topic “The History of Russian uniforms”.
And the Marshall Islands came up with this piece to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the American national anthem “The Star-Spangled Banner”.
If you are planning to go on an adventurous holiday, you might be motivated to visit Ethopia after studying that country’s newly-published stamps aimed at promoting tourism.
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