Fishing boats berth at a whart in Haikou, capital of south China's Hainan Province, May 16, 2016. China banned fishing from May 16 to Aug. 1 in the South China Sea, a measure taken for the 18th consecutive year. (Xinhua/Guo Cheng)
PARIS, June 27 (Xinhua) -- In an op-ed recently carried by the French daily Le Figaro, Chinese Ambassador to France Zhai Jun has reiterated the country's stance that China does not accept the arbitration on the South China Sea issue.
The sovereignty over the islands in the South China Sea and their adjacent waters belongs to China, Zhai noted in the signed article published on June 24.
In the 1970s, the Philippines successively seized several of the Chinese Nansha islands and started to claim sovereignty of these island and the surrounding waters, which the Chinese government repeatedly denounced as a serious violation of China's territorial sovereignty and maritime rights, Zhai said.
The dispute between China and the Philippines over the South China Sea is in fact about the sovereignty of the islands, Zhai explained.
The arbitration proceedings initiated by the Philippines are based on certain provisions of The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) adopted in 1982. At the same time, the Convention also allows a member State to declare in writing that it does not accept one or more compulsory dispute settlement procedures of certain categories of disputes.
The Chinese government made such a statement in 2006 rejecting any binding dispute resolution, including the arbitration, for disputes concerning the delimitation of maritime areas, and application of laws, as well as for the disputes that the United Nations are exercising functions to resolve by its Carter, Zhai said.
So, the Philippines have tried to hide its real purpose of its requests. It's obvious that these requests in fact are about the sovereignty of certain islands and reefs in the South China Sea, and they aim to legitimize the claims of the Philippines in this manner, Zhai wrote.
China has all along stood for peacefully settling territorial and maritime delimitation disputes through negotiation with countries directly concerned. Since quite a long time ago, there has been an agreement in this direction for the settlement of disputes in the South China Sea between China and the Philippines through the Joint Statement between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of the Philippines concerning Consultations on the South China Sea and on Other Areas of Cooperation states signed in 1995, the Joint Statement of the China-Philippines Experts Group Meeting on Confidence-Building Measures signed in 1999, the Joint Statement between the Government of the People's Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of the Philippines on the Framework of Bilateral Cooperation in the Twenty-First Century signed in 2000, and several other documents signed by the two governments, Zhai continued.
The consensus of China and the Philippines regarding the settlement of disputes through negotiations has been confirmed in multilateral frameworks. The Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), which China signed in 2002 with the Philippines and other ASEAN member states, states that "the Parties concerned undertake to resolve their territorial and jurisdictional disputes by peaceful means... through friendly consultations and negotiations by sovereign states directly concerned, in accordance with universally recognized principles of international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea," the Chinese ambassador explained.
These bilateral documents and the provisions of the DOC constitute an agreement between China and the Philippines who have obligation to negotiate to resolve their differences. Negotiation is the only way accepted by both parties to settle their disputes over the South China Sea, including demands introduced by the Philippines to the Arbitral Tribunal.
The arbitration on the South China Sea is undoubtedly the result of the intervention of outside powers and the will of an Arbitration Tribunal which does not hesitate to excessively expand its competence. Similarly, some voices urging China to accept the ruling of the Arbitration Tribunal reflect an international context which is more than complex. With this arbitration, it is not only the right of China but rather the rights of all state parties to UNCLOS that are violated, Zhai stressed.
THE HAGUE, June 27 (Xinhua) -- The disputes over the South China Sea between China and the Philippines are not appropriate for a judicial settlement or arbitration, experts said Monday.
An arbitral tribunal's decision to allow a case unilaterally initiated by the Philippines is also highly questionable, according to a group of leading experts on international law who concluded a seminar here. Full story
THE HAGUE, June 27 (Xinhua) -- A group of experts on international law voiced their doubts and concerns on Sunday over the South China Sea arbitration, warning the proceedings of the case are questionable.
Some 30 experts from Asia, Africa, the United States and Europe exchanged views at a seminar co-organized by Leiden University's Grotius Center for International Legal Studies and Wuhan University's Institute for Boundary and Ocean Studies. Full story
BARCELONA, June 26 (Xinhua) -- "Bilateral agreement is the best solution" for resolving the dispute in the South China Sea, Spanish political scientist and PhD in Intercultural Studies Marc Selgas Cors said in a recent interview with Xinhua.
It is expected that the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague will soon announce the decision on the arbitration case brought by the Philippines. Full story
RIO DE JANEIRO, June 26 (Xinhua) -- China's sovereignty over the South China Sea islands has already been established and there are no legal reasons for the Philippines'claim for the sovereignty over the Huangyan Island, a Brazilian expert has said.
The islands belong to China and not to the Philippines, and that is a matter already settled decades ago, Carlos Tavares, an author of 10 books on China and a longtime expert of China-Brazil relations, told Xinhua. Full story
BUENOS AIRES, June 23 (Xinhua) -- The disputes between China and the Philippines over the South China Sea should be settled through bilateral negotiation, Argentine expert Paola de Simone said Thursday.
Simone, a lawyer and political analyst from the University of Buenos Aires, told Xinhua that Manila's arbitration request over the issue "violated the Philippines' commitment to the 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC)." That is, territorial and jurisdictional disputes should solved through friendly consultations and negotiations by sovereign states directly concerned. Full story
MANILA, June 9 (Xinhua) -- The Philippine government has been behind the intensifying tensions in the South China Sea, a former diplomat of the country told Xinhua on Wednesday.
Alberto Encomienda, former secretary-general of Maritime and Ocean Affairs Center of the Philippine Foreign Affairs Department, said: "China has been for the negotiations all along, but from the beginning we are not." Full story
The differences between China and the U.S. over the South China Sea issue have become a matter of concern and even anxiety. But some of the perceptions in the U.S. and elsewhere about China’s policy and intentions in the area are misplaced. A pressing task is to understand the facts and China’s intentions correctly so as to avoid real danger and consequences as a result of misinterpretation and miscalculation.Full Story
BEIJING, June 8 (Xinhua) -- China on Wednesday again urged the Philippines to stop its arbitral proceedings and return to the right track of settling relevant disputes in the South China Sea through bilateral negotiation with China.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei made the comment at a routine press briefing.Full Story