(From Reuters)

The Philippines on Monday urged China to respect a forthcoming ruling by an arbitration court in the Hague on a territorial dispute in the South China Sea.

China refuses to recognize the case lodged by the Philippines with the tribunal and says all disputes should be resolved through bilateral talks.

Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario’s comments came after China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, on a visit to the United States, accused the Philippines of “political provocation” in seeking arbitration to resolve the dispute.

“The Philippines, as well as the international community, is asking China to respect the forthcoming ruling of the arbitral tribunal and together advance an international rules-based regime,” del Rosario said in a statement in Manila.

“If China does not heed our collective call, does it mean that China considers itself above the law?”

The tribunal’s ruling is expected before May. Read More

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