BEIJING – China summoned the Philippines ambassador on Monday to lodge a strong complaint over Manila’s seeking of international arbitration in a festering territorial dispute over the South China Sea.
The Philippines filed the case against China on Sunday at an arbitration tribunal in The Hague, subjecting Beijing to international legal scrutiny over the waters for the first time.
Chinese Deputy Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin told the Philippines’ ambassador that China was “extremely dissatisfied and resolutely opposed” to the case, repeating that China did not accept it and would not participate.
“The Philippines forcing of international arbitration is not conducive towards resolving the Sino-Philippine dispute over the South China Sea,” the Foreign Ministry cited Liu as saying.
The case would not shake China’s resolve to protect its sovereignty and territorial integrity, Liu added.
The only way to address the issue was through bilateral talks, he said, repeating another of China’s standard lines.