Your July 17 editorial “The South China Sea, in Court,” about the arbitration case raised by the Philippines over rights to the South China Sea, is not fair.
China, a latecomer to land reclamation, has been exercising utmost restraint. But the status quo has long been broken by the Philippines and some other claimants, which built facilities, including military ones, on the reefs owned by China.
China calls on relevant parties to shelve their differences and engage in joint development in the South China Sea. Actually in 2005, China, the Philippines and Vietnam conducted joint marine seismic survey in some areas of the sea. It would have set a good precedent if the Philippine government had not changed its mind.