UN tribunal ruling on sea dispute ‘will hold weight’—Palace
MANILA, Philippines—Even if China rejects the decision of the arbitration case filed by the Philippines on the territorial dispute in the West Philippine Sea, the ruling of the United Nations (UN) should prevail.
“A decision from that will hold weight in as far as it is the proper tribunal to deal with issues such as this,” deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a press briefing Thursday.
Valte was reacting to a Chinese expert from the National Institute for South China Sea Studies who said China would not adhere when the UN would make its verdict on the arbitration case.
She said the statement was “hypothetical” stressing that the tribunal has yet to decide on the case.
“I don’t want to take that as gospel truth already given the fact that nothing along that line has happened yet,” she said.
When asked if the President made the right move to bring up the country’s maritime dispute with China with other countries during his European tour, she said:
“Of course appropriate given that the area affected and the percentage of how much trade passes through that way. It is a concern for a lot of countries and you’ve seen the support that the President was able to get from the countries that he was able to visit.”
The Philippines and China have been locked in a long standing maritime dispute over parts of the West Philippine Sea.
The country has filed several arbitration cases before the UN but the Chinese government refused to recognize the government’s move.
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