MANILA – A Chinese legal scholar, who wrote an article about the 9-dash line published by the American Journal of International Law (AJIL), is a sitting judge in the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) where the Philippines has filed a complaint against China’s “excessive claim” in the South China Sea.
Chito Sta. Romana, the former Beijing bureau chief of ABC News, and an Emmy award-winning journalist who lived in China for 39 years, noted this at the Tapatan media forum at Aristocrat Restaurant in Manila on Monday.
Sta. Romana said that Professor Zhiguo Gao is a sitting judge in ITLOS but not a member of an ad-hoc tribunal created to hear the Philippine memorial against China, who wrote a legal article about the 9-dash line which could be used to “understand” China’s position in its maritime row with the Philippines. Manila has said with the 9-dash line, Beijing is practically claiming the entire South China Sea, including Philippine territory.