China’s refusal to honor PCA ruling may stall code of conduct — Carpio


MANILA, Philippines — With China’s possible resistance to the inclusion of the 2016 ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in the South China Sea Code of Conduct (COC), retired Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio is not optimistic that the said accord will be completed before President Rodrigo Dutere leaves office.

“I’m not optimistic because the Chinese will not agree to include the arbitral ruling because if they include the arbitral ruling, that means they accept the arbitral ruling,” Carpio, one of the staunch defenders of the country’s sovereign rights in the West Philippine Sea, said in an interview on ABS-CBN News Channel on Monday.

“But we cannot allow the arbitral ruling to be excluded because once it is not included in the Code of Conduct, China will say ‘See, the Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Natioon) countries have not included the arbitral ruling because they agree with us that arbitral ruling does not apply in the South China Sea.’ They will use it against us. That’s why we have to insist,” he added.

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