US maintains call for peaceful resolution of sea dispute
THE United States reiterated its call for a peaceful resolution of the South China Sea dispute following China’s release of military recruitment video that seemed to warn other nations.
“I think what will promote stability in the region are legal and peaceful means to settle disputes and the US feels very strongly about that and supports those efforts very much,” US Ambassador Philip Goldberg told reporters at Villamor Air Base on Monday on the sidelines of the turnover of 10 brand new choppers for the Philippine Air Force.
The 4-minute, 23-second video posted on YouTube early this month showcased China’s assets such as warships, submarines and fighter jets.
“Struggle over maritime rights have never ceased. We shall never yield even the tiniest bit of our resources,” a part of the translated subtitle of the video read.
“I think that our position has been clear that the way to settle disputes in South China Sea is through legal, peaceful and diplomatic means. That’s why we have the Philippines’ effort to bring the case before the ITLOS, UNCLOS. That’s why we have supported a code of conduct to better lay out the rules of the road because ultimately what we should all be seeking are rules-based, legal-based solutions to the various claims, not the use of force or threats or any kind of coercion,” Goldberg added.
The Philippines is one the US treaty allies and last year, both signed an agreement that would allow US forces to rotate in the country without having to build permanent basis.
China claims most parts of the South China Sea and it has made rapid progress in seven reefs in the Spratlys in recent months. The US is one of the critics of China’s massive reclamation works in the disputed maritime superhighway.
The Philippines is pushing for an arbitration case against China to invalidate its sweeping claims in the disputed seas. China has repeatedly refused to participate in the proceedings, however.
Malacanang and the Department of Foreign Affairs have also downplayed the recruitment video and instead called on for a diplomatic track in solving disputes in the South China Sea.
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