China slams U.S.' citing mutual defense treaty to back Philippine provocations in South China Sea

2024-03-07 08:57:28Global Times Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

China on Wednesday reiterated its stance over South China Sea including the Ren'an Jiao (Ren'ai Reef) and slammed the Philippines' provocations and the U.S.' backing the Philippines regardless of the facts.

Ren'ai Jiao is part of China's Nansha Islands, and China has indisputable sovereignty over the Nansha Islands and their surrounding waters, including the reef, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said at a routine press briefing.

The Chinese Coast Guard (CCG) has taken necessary law enforcement measures against the Philippines' provocative actions in Ren'ai Reef, which were legitimate, professional, and restrained. In this incident, it is clear who is provoking and causing trouble, who is violating international law, and who is endangering peace and stability in the South China Sea. The truth is clear for all to see, Mao said.

The U.S. State Department disregards facts, distorts right and wrong, baselessly attacks and accuses China's legitimate actions to safeguard its rights, and frequently threatens China by invoking the U.S.-Philippines Mutual Defense Treaty. It backs and encourages the Philippines' provocative actions of encroachment. China firmly opposes this, Mao stressed.

The so-called South China Sea arbitration, which is cited by the Philippines and some countries as a standard, seriously violated international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, and is completely illegal and invalid, Mao said.

The dispute on Ren'ai Reef is a bilateral issue between China and the Philippines, and any third party, including the U.S., should not take advantage of the situation or intervene. China's determination to defend its legitimate rights is unwavering, and the Philippines' attempts of provocation will not succeed.

China advises the U.S. not to use the Philippines as a pawn to disrupt the situation in the South China Sea, and the Philippines should not allow itself to be manipulated by the U.S.. History teaches the lesson that countries acting as a pawn will ultimately become abandoned pieces.

A joint statement by Australia and the ASEAN stated that countries should avoid taking actions that impact peace and tranquility in the South China Sea.

In response to a question on the statement and the Philippines' accusation against China, Mao said she had not seen the full text of the statement, but in principle, the current situation in the South China Sea is generally stable.

China's position is consistent and clear. We will continue to be committed to properly managing differences with relevant countries through dialogue and consultation, fully and effectively implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea with ASEAN members, actively promote consultations on the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea, and jointly safeguard peace and stability throughout the region.

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