Posts Tagged ‘Permanent Court of Arbitration’

Carpio on China: If you don’t protest, you give up your rights

December 10, 2018

Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio said not filing a diplomatic protest against China’s alleged aggression in the West Philippine Sea would be tantamount to giving up the country’s rights over the disputed waters.

The magistrate was reacting to a statement of Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddy Boy Locsin that protesting Beijing’s aggression was “basically throwing pieces of paper at a brick wall.”

Carpio, a vocal critic of the Duterte administration’s handling of the West Philippine Sea dispute, stressed the importance of filing note verbales against China’s expansive claim, citing how diplomatic protests aided the country’s victory at the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) in 2016.

“We won in the Hague because we filed several, numerous protests, note verbales protesting China’s incursions in the West Philippine Sea. Had we not made those protests, we could have lost,” Carpio told CNN Philippines’ The Source on Monday.

READ: China Coast Guard shoo away Filipino TV news crew from Panatag Shoal

Image result for chinese coast guard, near vietnam, oil rig, photos

Chinese Coast Guard vessel protects a Chinese oil well in the South China Sea near Vietnam  on June 13, 2014. Reuters FILE photo

He was referring to the landmark 2016 decision by the PCA that held that China had “no legal basis” to “claim historic rights to resources within the sea areas falling within the ‘nine-dash line’”.

Carpio was part of the legal team that argued the Philippines’ case before the Hague-based PCA.

The magistrate also explained how the Tribunal favored the Philippines after it protested China’s  nine-dash line map during the past administration.

“China submitted their nine-dash line map to the UN (United Nations) in 2009, and China said you did not object. But the UN said, the Tribunal said Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei the Philippines protested within a reasonable period… and because of that China cannot claim that the Philippines acquiesce,” he said.

“That was the basic decision, the very first preliminary decision of the Tribunal whether we acquiesce to the nine-dash line because that was the position of China but the Tribunal said the Philippines did not acquiesce and we protested through a note verbal timely,” he added.

READ: Palace: Gov’t probing China’s ‘bullying’ of TV crew in Panatag Shoal

Carpio stressed that “we won because we protested” on numerous occasions when China imposed its will in the West Philippine Sea.

“We show (the Tribunal) that we never accepted China’s claim because we kept on protesting and we won because we protested. If you don’t protest, you give up your rights and we don’t wanna do that,” he said. /cbb

https://globalnation.inquirer.net/171905/carpio-on-china-if-you-dont-protest-you-give-up-your-rights

Related:

Advertisements

Carpio on South China Sea dispute: We have advanced tremendously

December 10, 2018

“If China can seize the EEZ (exclusive economic zone) of the Philippines, coastal states which are weak militarily will also suffer at the hands of their stronger neighbors.”

Supreme Court Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio believes that the Philippines has “advanced tremendously” in connection with a maritime dispute over the South China Sea.

“This is a long-term struggle. Where are we now? We have advanced tremendously. We have the ruling,” Carpio said in an interview with political analyst Richard Heydarian on Friday.

He was referring to the landmark 2016 decision by the Permanent Court of Arbitration that held that China has “no legal basis” to “claim historic rights to resources within the sea areas falling within the ‘nine-dash line’”.

Senior Associate Justice Antonio Carpio

Edd Gumban/File

 

“The ruling is being enforced by the naval powers, and the South China Sea can never become a Chinese lake because of that,” Carpio said.

The senior justice, a vocal advocate of the Philippines’ maritime claims, also cited as a development the memorandum of understanding on oil and gas development that Beijing and Manila have signed.

The document, he said, envisions a service contract-type agreement on oil and gas development — a route that allows income splitting without China encroaching on Philippine sovereign rights.

“The way I look at it, we are progressing. The naval powers of the world have increased their freedom of navigation and overflight operations,” Carpio said.

“The tempo of these operations have increased tremendously under the Trump administration. They’re worried, they don’t want China to control the South China Sea.”

When asked for advice to the Philippine government, Carpio suggested: “We should be careful with our words, the president and the foreign minister, that we do not unintentionally waive anything.”

In particular, Carpio said that President Rodrigo Duterte “should be very careful” as his statements on disputes may bind the country under the doctrine of unilateral declaration.

The senior justice recalled Duterte announcing that he will set aside the landmark arbitral ruling. “That is a statement by a head of state against the interest of the country on a dispute, and if China accepted that, we are bound, we will be bound,” he said.

Carpio said Duterte’s statement prompted him to advise the Department of Foreign Affairs to clarify the president’s remarks, lest it be construed as an official abandonment of the international court’s decision.

“Had we not come out then, we would have been bound by the declaration because China would raise that,” the justice said.

Carpio was part of the legal team that argued the Philippines’ case before the Hague-based PCA.

Filipinos, too, must ensure that they do not waive any of their sovereign rights, and educate themselves and the world that China has “no historic right to the South China Sea,” he said.

“If China can seize the EEZ (exclusive economic zone) of the Philippines, coastal states which are weak militarily will also suffer at the hands of their stronger neighbors,” Carpio said. —LDF, GMA News

Includes video:

https://www.gmanetwork.com/news/news/nation/677472/carpio-on-south-china-sea-dispute-we-have-advanced-tremendously/story/

Related:

China Does Not Own The South China Sea (And Has No Love for The Philippines)

December 6, 2018

Letter  writer Austin Ong (“‘Lack of understanding’ of long-standing PH-China relations,” 11/29/18) clearly displayed an impressive knowledge of history as he narrated the friendly relationship between China and the Philippines that existed way back before our time.

As he wrote in part “… China, [in] centuries of relations, only traded with and extended friendship to us.”

Fine and dandy! But that was then and this is now.

Image result for Duterte, Xi Jinping, photos

Besides, in most business dealings, dealers will always show outright friendliness to whom they deal with. It’s good for the business since it helps keep their customers loyal.

Ong also questioned the Filipinos’ distrust of China but went on to say: “Of course, we must remain vigilant and be responsible for our own decisions, as no country would do that for us—  and that can only start with having the right facts.”

What exactly are the right facts?

To brief the historically minded Ong on current affairs, how about China’s aggressive acts of seizing and militarizing islands in the West Philippine Sea that the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague ruled were under the Philippines’ jurisdiction?

What about China’s continuous harassment of our fisherfolk in that part of the sea?

Aren’t these facts enough?

If those are not enough factual reasons to distrust China, then somebody please tell me what is.

JUANITO T. FUERTE,

Jtfuerte@comcast.net

Read more: https://opinion.inquirer.net/117955/philippine-china-relations-that-was-then-this-is-now#ixzz5YuAJxSpl
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

Related:

Philippines, Other Nations Need China as “Senior Uncle”

November 30, 2018

House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo on Thursday said the Southeast Asian region should consider itself as a “family” where the economic superpower is the “senior uncle” to “smaller” countries who have claims in the South China Sea.

This while she throws her support to the deals forged between the Philippines and China, including the joint oil and gas exploration.

“Ako, in general, pabor ako sa mga joint projects eh, because they foster friendship and cooperation. More or less ganun din ang aking approach noong ako’y president,” Arroyo said in an interview during a road project inspection and gift-giving event in Brgy. Mitle Proper, Porac, Pampanga.

Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo

House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (File Photo by GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1058665/china-must-be-a-senior-uncle-to-southeast-asian-countries-like-ph-says-arroyo#ixzz5YJkz03T3
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

“Dapat kasi, ako ha, itong mga away-away sa mga… or hindi naman away, mga differences in the region, and maganda diyan sana, ‘yung China i-consider niya ang sarili niya as the senior uncle sa maraming mga pamangkin,” she also said.

The Pampanga 2nd District congresswoman added: “‘Yung mga maliliit na bansa, sa isang pamilya, lahat ng miyembro ng pamilya ay meron silang tungkulin para sa ikinabubuti ng pamilya. So, ‘yun ang dapat maging attitude ng lahat.”

Arroyo, a former President, has taken a pro-China stance in the past and has backed President Rodrigo Duterte’s bilateral talks with the Asia’s superpower.

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Duterte recently witnessed the signing of 29 agreements between Beijing and Manila, which have been locked in a territorial dispute in the West Philippine Sea (WPS). The agreements were forged during Xi’s state visit to the Philippines last November 19-20.

One of the deals was a memorandum of understanding on cooperation on oil and gas development.

READ: PH, China sign MOU on oil and gas development, 28 other deals

In July 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague ruled Beijing’s claim to almost the entire South China Sea as invalid. But Duterte has chosen to set aside the historic ruling and engaged China in bilateral talks.  /kga

Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1058665/china-must-be-a-senior-uncle-to-southeast-asian-countries-like-ph-says-arroyo#ixzz5YJkPRKjx
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

Philippines: Lawmakers Want “Full Transparency” on Deal With China For Joint Oil and Gas Exploration

November 22, 2018

The Duterte administration has the obligation to fully disclose the government’s agreements with China for a joint oil and gas exploration in the West Philippine Sea (WPS), progressive lawmakers from the House Makabayan bloc asserted Thursday.

ACTS Teachers Reps. Antonio Tinio and France Castro, Gabriela Rep. Emmie de Jesus, and Kabataan Rep. Sarah Elago called for a “full transparency” on the 29 agreements. 

President Rodrigo Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping witnessed the signing of said deals during the latter’s two-day visit in the Philippines on Monday to Tuesday.

Image result for Xi Jinping, Philippines, november 2018, photos

Visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping and Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte wave to the media before their one on one meeting at the Malacanang presidential palace in Manila, Philippines, November 20, 2018.Erik De Castro, Reuters

READ: PH, China sign MOU on oil and gas development, 28 other deals

“Pinananawagan ng Makabayan na obligasyon ng Malacañang na ipaalam sa publiko ano ba talaga ang pinirmahan nyo?” Tinio said in a press briefing.

(The Makabayan is urging Malacañang that it’s the obligation of the government to inform the public whatever they have signed.)

De Jesus meanwhile said a full copy of the joint oil exploration deal should be divulged to ensure that not only a few people would benefit from the agreement.

“We care kasi alam natin na ‘yan ay hindi sa kagustuhan ng pinakamaraming mamamayan kundi sa kagustuhan lang ng iilan,” she said.

(We care because we know that this is not the liking of many but the liking of the few.)

Tinio also said that the deals, especially the one involving the WPS, should be scrutinized and its constitutionality should be questioned before the Supreme Court.

Philippines and China are locked in a territorial dispute in the WPS but Duterte has chosen to set aside this and the historic Hague ruling favoring the Philippines during the bilateral talks.

In July 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague ruled Beijing’s claim to almost the entire WPS as invalid. /jpv

READ: Duterte optimistic of even warmer China-PH ties

RELATED STORIES:

Maranao leader wants ‘judicial scrutiny’ of PH-China fuel search deal

PH, not China, should draft oil, gas exploration deal – Locsin

.
Read more: https://globalnation.inquirer.net/171581/house-makabayan-bloc-demands-full-transparency-on-ph-china-deal#ixzz5XZResL3M
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

Related:

Two years after Philippines’ pivot, Duterte still waiting on Chinese loans and investment pledges to materialize — Duterte’s naivety became a slam dunk strategic coup for China

November 19, 2018

The Philippines is not on China’s Belt and Road but China agreed to financing in the Philippines to keep its hold on the South China Sea

“Duterte’s naivety with China has been a slam dunk strategic coup for China, no doubt about it.”

If Duterte is unable to show an economic dividend from his China gambit he may be in real trouble soon…

President Rodrigo Duterte and People’s Republic of China President Xi Jinping pose for a photo following a successful bilateral meeting at the Boao State Guesthouse on April 10, 2018. Ace Morandante, Malacanang/file

MANILA – Two years after Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte announced a divorce with old ally the United States in return for bumper business ties with China, he doesn’t have much to show for it.

Duterte left Beijing in 2016 with $24 billion of Chinese loans and investment pledges for his ambitious infrastructure overhaul, a few weeks after saying the Philippines was being treated like a dog by Washington and would be better off with China.

But only a fraction of China’s pledged support has materialized, exposing Duturte to criticisms he has been complicit in allowing China to pose threats to Philippines’ sovereignty, and been left high and dry by Beijing.

When Xi Jinping visits the Philippines this week, Duterte will need the Chinese president to put his money where his mouth is and help Duterte justify his geopolitical concessions to a historic rival, according to Richard Heydarian, a Manila-based defense and security analyst.

“Otherwise, we can definitely conclude that there’s really nothing much in the rhetoric and the Philippines has been taken for a ride,” Heydarian said.

“Duterte’s naivety with China has been a slam dunk strategic coup for China, no doubt about it.”

Philippine’s Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said it would be unreasonable to expect all the Chinese pledges to come through after only two years, but officials were hopeful intervention by Xi after his visit could help.

“We’re very optimistic this will, their head of state, will pressure their bureaucracy to speed up the process,” he said last week.

Duterte’s signature “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program, the centerpiece of his economic strategy, involves 75 flagship projects of which about half are earmarked for Chinese loans, grants or investments.

But according to publicly available Philippine government documents reviewed by Reuters, only three of those – 2 bridges and an irrigation facility worth a combined $167 million – have so far broken ground.

The rest, including 3 rail projects, 3 highways and 9 bridges, are at various levels of planning and budgeting, or are awaiting Chinese government approval for financing, or the nomination of Chinese contractors.

‘POSITIVE RESULTS’

China’s foreign ministry said major projects agreed by both sides “are proceeding smoothly and continue to achieve positive results”. China wanted to boost trade and investment and “promote the early commencement of building of even more agreed upon projects,” the ministry said in a statement to Reuters.

Chinese committed investments in the Philippines in the first half of this year were just $33 million, about 40 percent of that of the United States and about a seventh of Japan’s, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority, tracking a similar trend the previous year.

Trade between China and the Philippines has picked up significantly, but data suggests mostly in China’s favor.

Chinese exports to the Philippines grew 26 percent in the first nine months of 2017 from the same period a year earlier, outpacing its imports from Manila, which grew 9.8 percent.

Net foreign direct investment from China has, however, surged to $181 million for the first eight months of this year, from $28.8 million for all of 2017, according to the Philippine central bank.

PRESSURE NEEDED

Duterte has made a point of praising China effusively and confessing his “love” for Xi. He even jokingly offered his country to Beijing as “a province of China”.

Many ordinary Filipinos as well as international lawyers and diplomats are incensed by Duterte’s refusal to even raise with China the Permanent Court of Arbitration’s (PCA) 2016 award that ruled in the Philippines’ favor, and invalidated Beijing’s claim to most of the South China Sea.

Instead, Duterte is seeking an agreement with China to jointly explore offshore gas at the disputed Reed Bank in the resource-rich and strategic waterway. Some lawmakers fear that could be tantamount to recognizing Beijing’s claim to a site that the PCA ruling said China has no sovereign rights to under international law.

Duterte has also been against Southeast Asian countries taking a united stand against China militarization and at a regional summit last week, he warned against causing friction, because the South China Sea was “now in their (China’s) hands”.

Heydarian said if Duterte was unable to show an economic dividend from his China gambit, it could weaken his hand ahead of 2019 mid-term elections that might determine the success or failure of his presidency.

To stand a chance of delivering on his policy agenda, Duterte needs his allies to command a majority in Congress and the Senate to ensure key legislation is passed to enable reforms aimed at generating revenue, attracting investment and creating higher-quality jobs.

“If after Xi Jinping’s visit, there’s still no big move by China to invest in the Philippines, if China’s militarization and reclamation will just continue unabated, you’re going to have a situation where Duterte will come under extreme pressure,” he said.

“The opposition is going to use that to pin down Duterte and his allies as Chinese lackeys.”

https://news.abs-cbn.com/focus/11/19/18/two-years-after-philippines-pivot-duterte-still-waiting-on-china-dividend

Philippines: Duterte to reiterate ‘principled position’ on South China Sea at ASEAN Summit

November 13, 2018

President Rodrigo Duterte will reiterate the Philippines’ “principled position” on the South China Sea issue, Malacañang said Tuesday, ahead of the 33rd Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and meetings with leaders of powerhouse nations in the Asia Pacific in Singapore.

Duterte will participate in the ASEAN plenary session later Tuesday and the 10-member regional bloc’s separate engagements with its dialogue partners including China, Russia, Japan and the United States set for Wednesday and Thursday.

Image result for south china sea, maps

“The President will reiterate the Philippines’ principled positions on matters concerning the South China Sea and transnational and transboundary issues such as terrorism, violent extremism, trafficking in persons, illicit drugs and disaster risk reduction and management,” Malacañang said in a statement.

The Palace did not elaborate on the points to be tackled by Duterte about the tensions in the South China Sea as Beijing continued to face scrutiny over its reported deployment of military aircraft and installation of anti-ship cruise missiles, surface-to-air missile systems and weather observation facilities on Manila-claimed reefs.

Duterte has chosen to seek stronger economic and trade ties with China, the world’s second biggest economy, instead of flaunting Manila’s victory over Beijing in the United Nations-backed Permanent Court of Arbitration in July 2016 which declared as illegal China’s claim over nearly the entire South China Sea.

Image result for Duterte, Philippines, photos

The President, however, promised to raise the ruling with China during his term which ends in June 2022.

ASEAN and China are still negotiating for a code of conduct in the disputed waterway, a process Chinese Premier Li Keqiang hoped would be completed in three years, and that such a deal would bolster free trade.

During the summits, the Palace said the Philippines is also looking forward to “exchanging views on ASEAN community-building as well as discussions on regional and global developments that impact regional peace, security and stability.”

After Singapore, Duterte will fly to Papua New Guinea to Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea for the 19th Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Meeting on November 17 to 18.

At APEC, the Palace said the President will work with the leaders of the 21-nation grouping to affirm the multilateral trading system and uphold the role of APEC as the forum for addressing issues, leveraging on the region’s economic growth and pursuing open markets.

Duterte will also rally support for micro, small and medium enterprises through continued development and facilitating their access to the global marketplace.

The President will also meet with the Filipino community in Papua New Guinea.

“In the Philippines’ engagements with ASEAN and APEC, the President will continue to strive to pursue goals and aspirations shared with stakeholders in the region and beyond to secure for our peoples a better quality of life, and for our nations, a more productive partnership,” Malacañang said. — Virgil Lopez/RSJ, GMA News

http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/news/nation/674602/palace-duterte-to-reiterate-principled-position-on-south-china-sea-at-asean-summit/story/

Philippines President to reaffirm the Philippines’ stand on the South China Sea — “Non-militarization” — “Self-restraint” — “Subservient to China”

November 13, 2018

In his forthcoming meeting with other Southeast Asian leaders, President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to reaffirm the Philippines’ stand on the South China Sea.

In a statement released Monday, Malacañang said the president would engage leaders of ASEAN dialogue partners to “further enrich partnership in key areas of cooperation.”

“The President will reiterate the Philippines’ principled positions on matters concerning the South China Sea and transnational and transboundary issues such as terrorism, violent extremism, trafficking in persons, illicit drugs and disaster risk reduction and management,” Malacañang said.

In this November 6 photo, President Rodrigo Duterte holds a Cabinet meeting at Malacañang Palace. The president will be attending the 33rd Association of Southeast Asian Nations Summit in Singapore this week.

STAR/Joven Cagande

 

Duterte arrived in Singapore on Monday evening to attend the 33rd ASEAN Summit and Related Summits from November 12 to 15.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin and United States Vice President Mike Pence will also attend the ASEAN summit in Singapore.

During the ASEAN summit in Manila last year, the 10-nation regional bloc and China have agreed to start the negotiations for the text of the Code of Conduct in the South China Sea.

China and several ASEAN member-states, including the Philippines, have overlapping claims in the disputed waterway.

In July 2016, The Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration issued a landmark ruling invalidating Beijing’s nine-dash line claim over the South China Sea, part of which is the West Philippine Sea.

The ASEAN, under Philippine chairmanship in 2017, made no mention of China’s expansive island-building activities in the contested waterway.

The chairman statement merely emphasized “non-militarization” and “self-restraint” among claimant states.

Read more at https://www.philstar.com/headlines/2018/11/13/1868262/duterte-stress-philippines-stand-south-china-sea-asean-meet#fs58UKUcWA0IwThj.99

U.S. accuses Chinese warship of ‘unsafe’ manoeuvres after near collision with USS Decatur in South China Sea

October 2, 2018

China insists its actions were in accordance with law after PLA navy warned US vessel to leave disputed waters near Spratly Islands

South China Morning Post

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 02 October, 2018, 10:02am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 02 October, 2018, 1:22pm

A Chinese destroyer nearly collided with a US warship in the disputed South China Sea after making what the Americans described as an “unsafe and unprofessional” manoeuvre in an attempt to warn it to leave the area.

A statement by the Chinese defence ministry said on Tuesday that the USS Decatur had ventured into Chinese waters on Sunday, and its navy had to send a Luyang-class destroyer to warn it off.

“The Chinese vessel took quick action and made checks against the US vessel in accordance with the law, and warned it to leave the waters,” it said.

The statement said the sailing by USS Decatur was provocative and China would resolutely protect its territorial sovereignty.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying said America’s actions would undermine regional stability.

“We call on the US to rectify its wrong behaviour and stop the provocations to avoid damaging China-US relations and regional peace and stability,” Hua said in a statement.

A Luyang class destroyer of the type involved in the incident. Photo: Handout

The American guided-missile destroyer passed through waters off the disputed Spratly Islands on Sunday, sailing within 12 nautical miles of the Gaven and Johnson reefs during a 10-hour patrol. Twelve nautical miles is the commonly accepted limit for territorial waters.

Beijing claims all the Spratly chain as its own but Vietnam, the Philippines and Taiwan have competing claims, while the US has been conducting “freedom of navigation” exercises in the waters.

In a statement released late on Monday, the US described the move by the Chinese destroyer as unsafe because it moved within 41 metres (45 yards) of the US warship.

US Pacific Fleet deputy spokesman Nate Christensen said the Chinese destroyer had “approached USS Decatur in an unsafe and unprofessional manoeuvre in the vicinity of Gaven Reef in the South China Sea”.

He added: “The PRC destroyer conducted a series of increasingly aggressive manoeuvres accompanied by warnings for Decatur to depart the area.”

After the Chinese ship came within 45 yards of Decatur’s bow it moved to prevent a collision.

The latest manoeuvre by the two militaries came amid escalating tensions in China-US relations.

On Monday it emerged that Beijing had called off security talks planned for October between US Secretary of Defence James Mattis and Chinese Defence Minister Wei Fenghe.

https://www.scmp.com/news/china/military/article/2166565/chinese-destroyer-nearly-collided-uss-decatur-after-trying-drive

Related:

No automatic alt text available.

The U.S. does not recognize China’s claims in the South China Sea. China says it has sovereignty over all the South China Sea north of its “nine dash line.” On July 12, 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague said this claim by China was not valid. But China and the Philippine government then chose to ignore international law. Vietnam has been unable to develop its own undersea oil due to China’s aggressive behavior. The U.S. views China’s base building in the South China Sea as unlawful and similar to Russia’s incursions into Georgia, Crimea and Ukraine.

Chinese warship nearly hits U.S. destroyer in South China Sea

October 2, 2018

China accused the United States of ignoring its sovereignty Tuesday after an American warship sailed near islands claimed by Beijing in the disputed South China Sea, further rattling relations between the countries after weeks of escalating military tensions.

A Chinese destroyer came within yards of the U.S. Navy ship Sunday, compelling it to switch direction in what American officials called an “unsafe and unprofessional” clash.

China’s Defense Ministry countered that the USS Decatur should never have traveled through those waters in its “freedom of navigation” mission, provoking Beijing to order a Luyang-class warship to force it away from the Spratly Islands.

“The Chinese vessel took quick action and made checks against the U.S. vessel in accordance with the law, and warned it to leave the waters,” spokesman Wu Qian said in a statement.

By Danielle Paquette

October 2 at 1:30 AM
The Washington Post

Image result for USS Decatur, photos
USS Decatur

The presence of American ships near the Chinese-claimed archipelago off the coast of the Philippines, Malaysia and southern Vietnam is “seriously threatening China’s sovereignty and security” and “seriously undermining the relations between the two countries and the two militaries,” Wu added.

A statement Monday from the U.S. Pacific Fleet blasted the Chinese response as “aggressive.”

Related image

The Chinese destroyer involved in the incident was said to be a Luyang type destroyer, similar to the one in this photo

“The PRC destroyer approached within 45 yards of Decatur’s bow, after which Decatur maneuvered to prevent a collision,” spokesman Charlie Brown said.

The Decatur had been conducting what the American military calls freedom of navigation operations, or missions to promote international lawfulness in oceanic territory claimed by multiple countries, including Malaysia, Vietnam and the Philippines.

Washington has said it aims to reject what it considers excessive maritime claims by any country.

No automatic alt text available.

China has built seven military bases near the Philippines — including on Gaven and Johnson reefs. USS Decatur was operating in International waters near Gaven and Johnson reefs

Decatur ventured Sunday morning by reefs and rocks that Beijing has tried to turn into artificial islands to expand its grip on the South China Sea, but U.S. officials have maintained that such land doesn’t count as real territory, said Lawrence Brennan, a law professor at Fordham University in New York.

American and Chinese warships have had close encounters in the past, he added, but Sunday’s encounter “appears to have been closer than any recent event.”

The maritime showdown came about a week after Chinese officials canceled military talks with the United States that were supposed to be held in Beijing in late September.

The government scrapped the defense-related conversations in response to American sanctions imposed last month on Chinese military personnel for purchasing Russian combat aircraft and missile supplies.

Then Beijing called off a security meeting with Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis on Monday that had been scheduled for October, the New York Times reported.

The White House and State Department did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The military strain between the world’s two largest economies worsens as they’re locked in an increasingly heated trade war.

Washington and Beijing hit each other with the largest round of tariffs yet last week, now covering roughly half their goods traded.

President Trump ordered new levies on $200 billion in Chinese imports, and Beijing responded with tariffs on $60 billion in American products, nearing the point of running out of U.S. goods to target.

Neither side has showed signs of giving up, and there are no more trade negotiations scheduled to end the commercial battle.

Trump warned in September that if Chinese President Xi Jinping refuses to budge, he will unleash tariffs on another $267 billion in Chinese imports, placing higher border taxes on basically everything the United States buys from China.

That order last year amounted to $505 billion.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/chinese-warship-nearly-hits-us-destroyer-in-south-china-sea/2018/10/02/877cc788-c5fb-11e8-9158-09630a6d8725_story.html?utm_term=.7fb20d1b377d

Related:

No automatic alt text available.

The U.S. does not recognize China’s claims in the South China Sea. China says it has sovereignty over all the South China Sea north of its “nine dash line.” On July 12, 2016, the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague said this claim by China was not valid. But China and the Philippine government then chose to ignore international law. Vietnam has been unable to develop its own undersea oil due to China’s aggressive behavior. The U.S. views China’s base building in the South China Sea as unlawful and similar to Russia’s incursions into Georgia, Crimea and Ukraine.

.
.
.
.
.
.
.