Manila says UN tribunal meets on South China Sea

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DFA spokesman Assistant Secretary Raul Hernandez. FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines says a United Nations arbitration tribunal has convened in The Hague to look into a case it lodged to question the legality of China’s massive territorial claims in the South China Sea.

Department of Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez told a news conference Tuesday that the five-member tribunal under the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea convened last week in the Netherlands and approved a set of rules to look into the legal challenge the Philippines launched against Beijing in January.

The Philippines says that China’s claim over virtually the entire South China Sea, including its seizure of several islets and reefs, is illegal and violates UNCLOS, the 1982 U.N. convention which sets territorial limits for coastal states.

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  • SaintJames2011

    According to anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks;

    Chinese authorities have failed to identify specific historical evidence backing Beijing’s claims that it owns disputed islands in the West Philippine Sea, a confidential US embassy cable publishe d by anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks said.

    Cable 08BEIJING3499, sent to Washington by the US embassy in Beijing in September 9, 2008, said a Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) official and a local scholar could not identify specific historical records to justify China’s “Nine Dashes” claim that covers the whole Spratlys and areas within other countries’ exclusive economic zones (EEZs).

    MFA Department of Treaty and Law Oceans and Law of the Sea Division Deputy Director Yin Wenqiang told a US embassy political officer on August 30, 2008 that “China has indisputable sovereignty over the islands in the South China Sea and the adjacent waters.”

    However, the US official said “Yin admitted he is not aware of the historical basis for the ‘Nine Dashes'” and only mentioned unspecified “Chinese historical documents” that indicate the basis for China’s claims on territory west of the Philippines, according to the cable.

    • Marx Louis Wang

      Thanks for this exposure! This will stop their daydreaming.

  • joboni96

    tuloy pagpalakas ng depensa
    yan lang naiintindihan ng intsik switik

    mga kolonisadong utak kasi sa dnd at afp
    mahilig sa pormang magarbo at sa laki kita

    kikita rin kayo sa mga surplus na mabilis dumating
    lalakas pa pilipino sa in-country upgrading

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