PH thanks UK, France, Germany for rejecting China’s claim over South China Sea
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang on Friday expressed gratitude to the United Kingdom, France, and Germany for rejecting China’s South China Sea claims before the United Nations.
“Nagpapasalamat po kami sa mga bansang ito dahil hindi naman po mabubura iyong panalo natin sa arbitral tribunal na iyan na nagsasabi na wala pong legal na basehan iyong kini-claim ng China,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in an online briefing.
(We are thankful for these countries because our victory in the arbitral tribunal that says China’s claim has no legal basis won’t be expunged.)
Despite this, Roque opposed anew calls to bring the sea row to the UN General Assembly saying the 2016 arbitral win is already “the victory” and “itself the act of being assertive.”
“Alam kasi ninyo hindi naiintidihan ng marami na iyong desisyon itself is the victory, iyong pagkakaroon ng desisyon itself is the act of being assertive dahil kung hindi naman natin pinursue iyong desisyon na iyan, iyong kasong iyan hindi magkakaroon ng desisyon,” Roque said.
(Many don’t understand that the decision itself is the victory, having that decision itself is the act of being assertive because there won’t be a decision if we didn’t pursue that.)
“Black propaganda po iyan na mayroon pa tayong ibang dapat gawin, iyong sinasabi nila na dapat gawin sa UN General Assembly, puwede po iyan pero let’s be realistic. Hindi po natin mase-sway ang 197 member ng UN kung ang kalaban po natin ay Tsina dahil alam naman natin limited ang ating kakayahan,” he added.
(It’s black propaganda to say that we have to do other things, what they say that we should bring it to the UN General Assembly, that’s possible but let’s be realistic. We cannot sway 197 members of the UN if we are up against China because we know we have limited ability.)
China has consistently refused to acknowledge the 2016 ruling of the UN-backed Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague that invalidated Beijing’s nine-dash line claim, which encompasses even the exclusive economic zone of the Philippines.
China’s reclamation activities and militarization in the heavily contested area have also raised concerns about the peace and stability in the strategic waterway.