China rejects historic pleadings filed by PH

Photo by Jay Directo/AFP

China rejected the historic pleading filed by the Philippines Sunday that challenges Beijing’s claims to disputed territories in the South China Sea. The Philippines raised the two countries’ dispute to a United Nations backed tribunal, but China claimed the arbitral tribunal has no right to hear the case. Beijing said the disputes involve land, which is not covered by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea or UNCLOS. Philippine Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said the case concerns the right of the Filipino fishermen to fish in the disputed sea. Manila said China’s claims encroach on the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone. Despite China’s warnings, Manila filed its 10-volume pleading to end decades of alleged bullying by Beijing. The Philippines considers the historic case its last resort, after it exhausted more than 17 years of dialogue. On Monday, President Benigno Aquino said the decision to file the pleading is not meant to “provoke” China.

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