The Court of Arbitration of the United Nations (UN) in Den Haag rejected the claim of China over the South China Sea and grant the objection of the Philippines. This is the response of the Philippines.
“Our experts are studying this carefully and thoroughly over the results of arbitration are important and deserve it. We urge all citizens remain calm and patient. The Philippines strongly affirmed his veneration towards this very important verdict.” said the Foreign Minister of the Philippines, Perfecto Yasay.
The Court of Arbitration in Den Haag, Netherlands, ruled that the claims of historical China in the South China Sea has no legal basis.
In a ruling issued today as reported by the BBC, the Court also stated that the island’s reclamation conducted China in these waters do not give any rights to the Government of China.
The Court said China has committed a violation of Philippine sovereignty rights and asserted that China has caused damage to the environment ‘ in the South China Sea by building artificial islands.
Judges in these courts base their verdict on the UN Convention on the law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which was signed by both the Government of China or the Philippines. This decision is binding, but the Court of arbitration shall have no power to apply it.
South China Sea dispute matters dealt with in this Court are listed unilaterally by the Government of the Republic of the Philippines to test the validity of the claim of China among others based on the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in 1982.
China’s claim to islands in the South China Sea area based on unilateral map in 1947, where the map covers almost the entire area including the Spratley Islands in it with the red lines marked (the nine dash line).
Instead of the Philippines stated that the area is known to be rich in oil and gas reserves that are its territory. Spratley Islands and surrounding waters are also located in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ), are located within a radius of 200 nautical miles as provided for in UNCLOS 1982.
The Chinese Government itself mentions the basic Arbitration Court decision is ‘ very weak ‘. A statement issued to the official Xinhua News Agency says ‘ Arbitase Court decision ‘ does not apply ‘.
Before the decision was issued, the Government of China also confirmed that they will maintain their military interests in the South China Sea and added that China has the military was alerted to ‘ face the threats and challenges ‘.
This is the first time the International Court of Justice issued a decision on sovereignty claims in the South China Sea.