The Group of Seven industrialized countries (G7) Foreign Ministers have released a statement airing concern on the situation in West Philippine Sea and East China Sea. The G7 ministers – composed of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States (European Union is also represented in the G7) – noted China’s aggression in West Philippine Sea without naming China.
“We express our strong opposition to any intimidating, coercive or provocative unilateral actions that could alter the status quo and increase tensions, and urge all states to refrain from such actions as land reclamations including large scale ones, building of outposts, as well as their use for military purposes and to act in accordance with international law including the principles of freedoms of navigation and overflight,” the G7 Foreign Ministers said in a Statement on Maritime Security released April 11 in Hiroshima, Japan.
They also reaffirmed the importance of maintaining a maritime order based upon the universally recognized principles of international law, including those reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
“We call on all states to pursue the peaceful management and settlement of maritime disputes in good faith and in accordance with international law, including through applicable internationally recognized legal dispute settlement mechanisms, including arbitration, recognizing that the use of such mechanisms is consistent with the maintenance and enhancement of the international order based upon the rule of law, and to fully implement any decisions rendered by the relevant courts and tribunals which are binding on them, including as provided under UNCLOS,” they said.