China / Government

Philippine renaming of S China Sea fond dream

(Xinhua) Updated: 2012-09-13 21:33

BEIJING - The Philippine government's renaming of the waters off its west coast as the "West Philippine Sea" is a willful move and only a fond dream and will not affect China's sovereignty over that part of the South China Sea it includes.

Manila on Wednesday unilaterally renamed the Luzon Sea and the waters around, within and adjacent to China's Nansha Islands and Huangyan Island as the "West Philippine Sea" in an administrative order signed by President Benigno Aquino.

Amid heated disputes between China and Japan over the Diaoyu Islands issue, Manila miscalculated in its scheme to seek illegal gains by fishing in the troubled waters. Its plot will not succeed and such a willful move is detrimental to China-Philippines relations.

Ample historical facts and evidence prove China's ownership of these islands and waters.

The provocative move confounds right and wrong and "will not change China's sovereignty over the Nansha Islands, Huangyan Island and their surrounding waters," a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said Thursday.

Such a unilateral move would only humiliate the Philippine government and turn it into a laughing stock in the international community, as the name "South China Sea" had long been acknowledged by the international community, the spokesman said.

Renaming an area as well known around the world as the South China Sea is merely Manila's fond dream. It is sheer fantasy to imagine that other countries will follow Manila's arbitrary behavior to change the official name of the South China Sea in text books and instructional materials.

Neither will the United Nations agree to register the invalid name, although the Philippine government said it would furnish a copy of the order and official map to the U.N. secretary-general.

The Philippine government has blatantly violated the basic principles and spirit of the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), which, signed by China and ASEAN, stipulates the territorial and jurisdictional disputes must be resolved between the countries concerned through friendly consultation and negotiation.

Strictly following the DOC, China has exercised maximum restraint on the South China Sea issue and proposed to shelve disputes and seek joint development, in a bid to prevent escalation and maintain peace and stability in the region.

Beijing hopes Manila will immediately cease such moves and play a positive and constructive role in China-Philippines relations on the occasion of the 35th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties.

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