MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte keeps on insisting that taking a stronger stance on against China's militarization in the South China Sea would mean going to war. Justifying his administration's soft stance on the maritime dispute, Duterte said that he would have taken a stronger and more "violent" position on the matter but that would "probably be a great loss to the nation and probably end up losing a war." As opposed to the president's pronouncements, the Philippines' options are not limited to waging a war to resolve the dispute. READ: Duterte explains soft stance on West Philippine Sea dispute: We can't win The Philippines actually has legal, diplomatic and security policy options following the July 2016 ruling of a United Nations-backed tribunal on the Sout China Sea, according to an April 2017 report titled "South China Sea Lawfare: Post-Arbitration Policy Options and Future Prospects." Legal policy options Jay Batongbacal, director of the University … [Read more...] about Does the Philippines have limited options on the South China Sea issue?
Arbitration south china sea
Asia UnhedgedReal-time intel on what moves markets Talks on the long-debated Code of Conduct for the South China Sea could restart next month, according to a meeting between China and the Philippines By Asia Times staff February 15, 2018 5:49 PM (UTC+8) Share Tweet Linkedin Print Email Share 0 Comment 0 China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) will have further talks soon on the long-debated Code of Conduct for the South China Sea – possibly next month, according to a consultative meeting between China and the Philippines in Manila on Tuesday. China’s Vice Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou and his Filipino counterpart Enrique Manalo wrapped up a second meeting on the bilateral consultation mechanism on the South China Sea. Despite its name, the Philippines is currently the only nation taking part in the framework spearheaded by Beijing to delineate its sovereignty in the South China Sea. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte salutes Chinese … [Read more...] about Beijing to ‘discuss South China Sea Code of Conduct soon’
One reason for this toothlessness is that any statement issued by Asean must be agreed to in full. If any member objects, it is rejected or revised. But the bigger reason is that some Asean members – Laos, Cambodia and now the Philippines – are beholden to Beijing because of largesse they have received from China. After a July 2016 ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration that junked China’s claim to almost the entire South China Sea and recognised Philippine sovereignty over the Kalayaan Islands – part of the Spratly group – Manila could have led in calling for a more assertive Asean stance against expansionist China’s threat to regional stability. But President Rodrigo Duterte rejected that move and instead shelved the arbitral ruling in favour of wider economic collaboration with China. Beijing has since pledged $4.4 billion (Bt138 billion) in funding to finance 12 huge infrastructure projects in the Philippines. This is on top of the … [Read more...] about Silence in South China Sea: Why is Asean so afraid of Beijing?
MANILA - Malacañang should summon Beijing’s envoy to Manila over China’s continued militarization of artificial islands and encroachment in the West Philippine Sea, former National Security Adviser Roilo Golez said Monday. Golez noted that the Palace promptly called US Ambassador Sung Kim last week to explain an intelligence community report supposedly describing President Rodrigo Duterte as a threat to democracy in the region. Palace summons US envoy over intel report's 'threat' tag vs Duterte The former security chief backed Malacañang’s decision to clarify the report, which cited Duterte’s bloody war on drugs and threat to declare a revolutionary government and place the entire country under martial law. Golez said the Palace’s move was “supportive of the dignity of the head of state,” who was identified in the US intelligence community’s global threat assessment. “But at the same time, the government should … [Read more...] about Palace asked to summon Beijing’s envoy too over South China Sea ‘militarization’
Perhaps China and the Philippines are taking the right steps to ease tension in the contentious South China Sea, announcing last week they were considering joint surveys for valuable underwater resources. Beijing has long been at the loggerheads with several members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, including the Philippines and Vietnam, over disputed islets in the sea. The conflict has led to immense tension and security risk in the region as China – and to a far lesser extent some Asean countries – establish and develop artificial islands that could conceivable be used as military launch areas. Attempts to settle the disputes have produced no tangible results, since all the countries involved reserve their right to sovereign territory, placing their own national interest above regional stability. Since 2013, there have been at least 38 reported small-scale incidents between vessels under the flags of claimant states. In November 2002 Beijing and … [Read more...] about What lies below the South China Sea