BEIJING, May 19 (Xinhua) -- China appreciates the support of the governments of Mozambique, Burundi and Slovenia on its stance on the South China Sea issue, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hong Lei said Thursday.
The three governments back China's efforts to resolve territorial and maritime disputes with directly involved countries through consultation and negotiation, Hong said at a regular news briefing.
"Burundi calls for correct understanding of China's exclusion of compulsory procedures to resolve the disputes, while Slovenia fully supports China's position on international arbitration of the issue," the spokesperson said.
He said the three governments' positions "help safeguard international fairness and justice."
Some 40 countries have expressed support for China's stance as an international tribunal in The Hague is due to announce its decision in May or June for an arbitration case filed by the Philippines against China over maritime disputes.
China has refused to accept or participate in the arbitration. It declared in 2006 it would exclude compulsory arbitration on disputes concerning maritime delimitation, a right guaranteed under Article 298 of the UN Convention of the Law of the Sea.
China advocates a dual-track approach to solving the disputes. The directly concerned states should negotiate in line with international law as China and ASEAN countries work together to maintain regional peace and stability.