Philippines ''on solid grounds'' on claims in Spratlys: Lorenzana
Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana assures the Philippines "stand on solid grounds on our claims in the Spratlys and the West Philippine Sea” despite the recent pronouncement of Chinese Foreign Ministry.
“There is the 1981 UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea), of which China is a signatory that gave the Philippine an (exclusive economic zone) EEZ of 200 nautical miles,” said Lorenzana.
Last week, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said China has sufficient historical and legal basis that Spratlys Group of Islands or Nansha Islands are within their territory.
Lorenzana emphasized that the 2016 ruling of the arbitral tribunal in The Hague denies China’s claim in West Philippine Sea.
“There is the PCA (Permanent Court of Arbitration) ruling of July 2016 which invalidated the Chinese historical claims,” Lorenzana stated.
“In short the Chinese have nothing working for them except their imagined historical claim,” he added.
Lu made the pronouncement after the Philippine government officials said e Chinese vessels should leave the territorial waters in the West Philippine Sea. Robina Asido/DMS