World / Asia-Pacific

China warns Philippines against 'blackmailing' on S. China Sea

(Xinhua) Updated: 2016-05-10 10:18

However, the Philippines, disregard of the consensus reached with China, shows no sincerity in solving the South China Sea issue through dialogue and "pretends to be a victim", said the spokesman, accusing Manila of stirring up trouble and aggravating the situation.

Manila unilaterally initiated an arbitration case against China over maritime disputes in the South China Sea at the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague in early 2013 under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). The decision will probably be announced in May or June.

When asked to comment on former US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel's recent remarks, Lu said some people choose to turn a blind eye to basic facts about the South China Sea issue and wantonly manipulated international law.

According to reports, Hagel said it would be "dangerous" for either side to disobey a decision of the Permanent Court of Arbitration.

Lu said China's position of non-acceptance and non-participation in the arbitration unilaterally initiated by the Philippines is clear and consistent.

Some Americans consider themselves champions of the rule of the law, yet the United States remains a non-signatory to the UNCLOS passed in 1982, said Lu.

The United States requires other countries to accept the settlement of disputes through a third party, yet itself has kept away from accepting the decisions of the UN court, he said.

It urges other countries to abide by international law, yet it keeps door wide open for illegal action by itself and its allies, said Lu, adding that the United States has ignored the Philippines' infringement to some islands and reefs of China's Nansha Islands for a long time.

Using the international law when convenient and abandoning it in unfavorable conditions gravely undermine the authority, solemnity and effectiveness of the international law, said Lu.

"This is a dangerous act that the international community must heighten vigilance against," he said.

The South China Sea disputes between China and the Philippines are over territorial and maritime delimitation. China declared in 2006 that arbitration and other compulsory dispute settlement procedures do not apply to issues such as maritime delimitation, as outlined in Article 298 of the UNCLOS.

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