Tag Archives: Diplomatic Relations

Philippines tells China at UN assembly: Stop coercion and intimidation

The Philippines told China to stop “coercion and intimidation” in the South China Sea during an exchange of responses at the 70th UN General Assembly (UNGA).  “Join the deliberations of the artibral tribunal and to let the merits be decided upon on the basis of international law and with transparency rather than by recourse to coercion and intimidation,” Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario told his Chinese counterpart at the UN General Assembly held last October 2.   The Department of Foreign Affairs said that Del Rosario reiterated at the assembly that the decision of the arbitral tribunal would end the sea disputes.   “With the growing support from the international community in peacefully resolving disputes in the South China Sea, including through arbitration, the Philippines believes that the final outcome of this arbitration process would pave the way for a settlement of the maritime disputes,” Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert F. del Rosario said in his address to the UNGA. – Read more:   http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/539651/news/nation/philippines-tells-china-at-un-assembly-stop-coercion-and-intimidation#sthash.WTaRne9B.dpuf

Spratly Issue: Death of our Sovereignty by Gianni Pansensoy 

BENEATH the islands invaded by China in the West Philippine Sea are 13 trillion dollars of proven huge reserve of gas as well as vast amount of oil that are the primary reasons of the dispute that continues to rage with no end in sight since China has been constructing its militay bases in the West Philippine Sea to bolster its economic interest through creeping and very low intensity expansionism. Despite of the global outrage to put an end to China’s destructive establishment of the artificial islands yet it remains deaf which means that it is throwing the world into the fire of another global upheaval. Those islands clearly belong to the Republic of the Philippines as being defined by UNCLOS yet China incessantly claims it without legal basis as well as historical facts to prove its ownership. thus, its occupation is illegal that violates the international law and a blatant assault against the sovereignty of the Philippines. The local Filipino fishermen who live along the coastal waters and subsist on fishing for survival are being barred by China’s coastguards to fish on their very own territorial waters,thus; pushing them into the brink of starvation. Despite of China’s militarization on the disputed islands which is a clear and present danger since it will be used as the primary base for a full-pledged invasion but there are corrupt Filipino businessmen as well as local politicians have been collaborating with the Chinese Government to extract massive quantities of soil from different parts of the Philippines for island building and military purposes. Read more: http://mindanaoexaminer.com/spratly-issue-death-of-our-sovereignty-by-gianni-pansensoy/

Chinese Coastguard Ships Approached Disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands

Chinese ships back near the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands. Japan’s Coast Guard identified three Chinese coast guard ships inside Japan’s territorial waters off the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands in the East China Sea over the weekend. The Chinese vessels spent around two hours in Japan’s territorial waters. The incursion is the first since September 19. Separately, one of the two Japanese men detained by China on charges of espionage in May was arrested on the Nanji islands in the East China Sea. The Nanji island chain is roughly 300 kilometers northwest of the Senkakus (which are uninhabited). China is supposedly building a military outpost on the islands; imagery released earlier in the year by IHS Jane‘s shows a heliport and other military facilities. Russia will hold off on recognizing North Korea’s nuclear weapons program. Though relations between Moscow and Pyongyang have displayed some signs of rapprochement, particularly in the months after Russia’s estrangement from the West over its annexation of Crimea, the Russians won’t accept North Korea as a nuclear weapon state. This is in line with how other parties to the Six-Party Talks process, which has been stalled since 2008, view North Korea. Russian deputy foreign minister Igor Morgulov noted on Sunday that ”It is never acceptable for Russia to effectively recognize North Korea’s status as a nuclear possessing country.” However, Morgulov wasn’t entirely dismissive of North Korea’s decision to pursue a nuclear weapons program: ”At the foundation of North Korea’s choice of nuclear weapons were concerns over their own national security,” he noted identifying the U.S.-South Korea alliance as a threat to North Korea’s security. Read more: http://thediplomat.com/2015/10/chinese-coastguard-ships-approached-disputed-senkakudiaoyu-islands/

‘You Will Have Chaos and Anarchy’

Thee foreign minister of the Philippines, Albert del Rosario, has been the key strategist in his country’s fight to uphold its claims in the South China Sea against Beijing, which asserts ownership of most of that crucial waterway. Last week, Del Rosario spoke with Lally Weymouth. Excerpts follow: Foreign Policy: What did you think of China’s President Xi Jinping’s remarks at the White House that China supports “maintaining peace and stability in the South China Sea [and] managing disputes through dialogue and … negotiation?” The Chinese president also said he did not intend to pursue militarization. Was there anything new in President Xi’s statements? Read more: http://foreignpolicy.com/2015/10/05/you-will-have-chaos-and-anarchy-albert-del-rosario-philippines-south-china-sea/

China asks U.S. for respect and trust

China hopes the United States can scale back activities that run the risk of misunderstandings, and respect China’s core interests, the Defence Ministry on Thursday cited a senior Chinese naval commander as saying. Each country has blamed the other for dangerous moves over several recent incidents of aircraft and ships from China and the United States facing off in the air and waters around the Asian giant. Last year the Pentagon said a Chinese warplane flew as close as 20 to 30 feet (7 to 10m) from a U.S. Navy patrol jet and did a barrel roll over the plane. The Pacific is an important platform for cooperation, Admiral Sun Jianguo, deputy chief of staff of the People’s Liberation Army, told Admiral Harry Harris, commander of the U.S. Pacific Command. Read more: http://chinadailymail.com/2015/10/04/china-asks-u-s-for-respect-and-trust/

Beijing’s South China Sea island building has polarised Asean nations

With a two-day late joint communiqué, foreign ministers of Southeast Asian countries have shown not only worries over Beijing’s island building in the South China Sea, but also a more polarised regional body that is failing to back up its words with action. In the statement dated August 4, but released only on Thursday night, top diplomats from the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) said land reclamations in the strategic body of waters had “increased tensions” in the region, despite China’s protests. But it stopped short of earlier calls by the Philippines and United States for all claimants to adopt Washington’s proposal to halt reclamation, construction and militarisation. The delay was a result of wrangling over how strong the wording about China’s behaviour should be, diplomats have said. And it reminded some analysts of the non-issuance of such a document in 2012, when Cambodia was in the Asean chair. “No Asean chair wants to be another Cambodia,” said Xie Yanmei, a senior China analyst at the International Crisis Group. The 2012 failure was widely interpreted to be a result of China revealing its hand to break Asean’s unity. It was the only time in the organisation’s 48-year history that foreign ministers failed to agree on a joint communiqué. Since then, the regional body had made a consensus to avoid a repeat of the experience, Xie said. Otherwise “it would appear that the organisation would be on the verge of collapse”.   Read more: http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/1847875/beijings-south-china-sea-island-building-has-polarised

Conspiracy denied

MANILA denied  Friday China’s claim that Japan and the Philippines ganged up against China at a regional security forum this week on the disputed South China Sea. Foreign Affairs spokesperson Charles Jose said there was no team-up between Japan and the Philippines, saying it was simply what the two countries saw was happening in the South China Sea. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi had said the two countries were ganging up on China and insisted that Beijing, which has been on a reclamation binge in disputed areas of the South China Sea, was not impeding the freedom of navigation in the contested waterway. The Palace said that the Philippines and Japan merely shared common beliefs. Read more: http://manilastandardtoday.com/mobile/2015/08/08/conspiracy-denied/

How China Views the South China Sea Arbitration Case

On December 7, 2014, China’s Foreign Ministry was authorized to release the “Position Paper of the Government of the People’s Republic of China on the Matter of Jurisdiction in the South China Sea Arbitration Initiated by the Republic of the Philippines.” Various explanations have been offered for this by media outlets both in China and abroad, and the issue is of renewed importance today. The Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague finished hearing the Philippines’ oral arguments this week, but as China refuses to participate in the arbitration, the December position paper remains the clearest outline of China’s stance on the case. What are the highlights and features of the document? What was the effect of publicly releasing this document? And what will China’s next step be? The Background As everyone who is following the South China Sea issue knows, the Philippines submitted a “memorial” of ten volumes and nearly 4,000 pages to the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea. Within that memorial, the first volume was the most important – 270 pages including the Philippines’ legal analysis and relevant evidence relating to this case, explaining in detail why the arbitral tribunal has the jurisdiction to accept the Philippines’ request for arbitration. Volumes two through ten were appendixes, including archival data, evidence, and maps supporting the Philippines’ position. According to the tribunal’s process, China had to present its counter-memorial by December 15, 2014. But on March 31, 2014, a spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry clearly expressed that China does not accept and will not participate in the arbitration. The act of releasing the position paper on the eve of the December deadline was effective in two ways: it both expounded on why the tribunal does not have jurisdiction over this case and reiterated China’s position of not participating in the case. So does this mean there has been a chance in China’s South China Sea policy, from the earlier, softer stance of “dual-track approach” to the clear position expressed in the position paper? If not, how to explain the relationship between these two?   Read more: http://thediplomat.com/2015/07/how-china-views-the-south-china-sea-arbitration-case/

Philippines rejects bilateral talks with China anew

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang yesterday rejected China’s renewed offer of bilateral talks to settle the West Philippine Sea dispute, saying only by engaging other members of the Association of Southeast Nations (ASEAN) can any negotiation on the issue be acceptable. “The Philippine position is clear: the principle of ASEAN centrality should be recognized in accordance with the Declaration of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC),” Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. told reporters in a news briefing. He was reacting to Chinese Ambassador Zhao Jianhua’s pronouncement on Monday that his country is “still open and will be open forever” to bilateral negotiations to settle its territorial spat with the Philippines. The Chinese ambassador’s statement came a day before the Netherlands-based Permanent Court of Arbitration was to determine in a hearing whether it has jurisdiction over Manila’s case contesting Beijing’s nine-dash-line claim. Hearings on the issue will be held until July 13. “I think the best is to sit down bilaterally to talk. We need to resume our bilateral negotiation without any condition. I think this is the best way that we can discuss how to peacefully settle these disputes,” Zhao told journalists at his residence after the Chinese government donated books to the National Library of the Philippines, gmanetwork.com reported.   Read more: http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2015/07/08/1474544/philippines-rejects-bilateral-talks-china-anew

How America and China Have Different Visions of International Order

This May, China’s Ministry of Defense published a white paper, “China’s Military Strategy,” only a few months after the United States’ most recent National Security Strategy (NSS) was released.  It is revealing to compare the two documents, both to see how each nation envisions the other in a strategic context, and because it adds to our understanding of both countries’ self-conceptions. The United States’ NSS focuses on a panoply of functional threats to national security—proliferation, climate change, terrorism—before moving on to discuss strengthening America’s economy and promoting state-building and human development in troubled countries.  Only the final section of the document discusses the question of “order,” including the “rebalance” of American attention to Asia. The Chinese Ministry of Defense paper, on the other hand, begins with the claim that although the international system is generally calm and on a peaceful trajectory, Chinese security is adversely affected by “new threats from hegemonism, power politics, and neo-interventionism.”  It goes on to describe the “rebalance” and the meddling of external countries in the South China Sea as having negative impacts on China’s security. The meddlesome, neo-interventionist hegemon is, of course, the United States. That the U.S. is front and center as a security threat in the Chinese strategy while China is buried at the back of the U.S. document is in itself worth contemplating. A more obvious disparity is the language with which the two documents describe the phenomenon of deep U.S. engagement in the region. The NSS, for example, describes the U.S. in rather different language. In his preface to the document, President Obama argues that “strong and sustained American leadership is essential to a rules-based international order that promotes global security and prosperity as well as the dignity and human rights of all peoples.”  The document’s section on the “rebalance” discusses both the deepening and broadening of economic and security ties to Asian nations.   Read more: http://thediplomat.com/2015/07/how-america-and-china-have-different-visions-of-international-order/