• ‘PH can elevate case vs China before UN Security Council’


    THE Philippines should elevate its case to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) if China will not abide by the upcoming ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA), an analyst said Tuesday.

    Ernest Bower, senior advisor to the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), said China is flexing its muscles in dividing members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) to prevent the regional bloc from taking a united action against its activities in disputed waters.

    “Beijing believes it could divide Asean on the South China Sea disputes,” said Bower who was the guest speaker at the South China Sea disputes forum hosted by the University of the Philippines-Diliman’s College of Law.

    He said countries claiming parts of the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea) such as the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam and Brunei Darussalam should take the case together against China.

    Bower said the Philippines also has the option to take the case to the UNSC for resolution to pacify tensions in the territory.

    He cited Resolution 530 issued by the UNSC on May 19, 1983, that resolved the Nicaragua-Honduras border issue. The resolution expressed deep concern at the situation on the Honduras-Nicaragua border disputes and averted a possible military confrontation.

    Also, Bower said the US needs to take a non-traditional approach in dealing with issues in the West Philippine Sea.

    He noted that the US cannot assert itself on the sea row when it has not ratified the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Unclos).

    “The US is facing a big country disease, similar to that of China where it does not want to commit its sovereignty to be covered by a Convention [Unclos]. It’s a disease where a country thinks it’s big enough to live within its borders,” Bower said.

    In a separate interview during a forum at the Department of Foreign Affairs, Christopher Roberts, director of executive education at the University of New South Wales, said the international community should put more pressure on China to respect whatever will be the ruling of the international tribunal on the complaint filed by the Philippines against Beijing.

    He acknowledged, though, that it will take a lot of efforts to compel China to behave.

    “Diplomacy should be the first course. But the problem is, how many decades of diplomacy have been there now? And it seems that diplomacy has been literally exploited and taken advantage of by Beijing,” he said.

    Roberts said China has a “distorted view” about the actions of the Philippines and the international community to supposedly settle the dispute.

    “The difficult thing with China is that they have made such a distorted view about all these processes, including a very peaceful process of going to Permanent Court of Arbitration,” he said.

    Not budging
    But Beijing said it will not budge on its claims of ownership over a vast tranche of the South China Sea.

    During a two-day confab in the Chinese capital, US Secretary of State John Kerry urged China to settle its territorial rows peacefully and based on the “rule of law.”

    But Beijing’s top diplomat Yang Jiechi said the United States should butt out of disputes a long way from its shores, including an international arbitration case brought by the Philippines.

    China’s stance on the case is “in line with international law,” Yang said, insisting that Beijing’s position “has not and will not change.”

    The case, he said, should be settled directly between the parties involved and called on Washington to “honor its promise of not taking a position in territorial disputes.”

    The South China Sea has “been China’s territory since ancient times” and China “has every right to uphold its territorial sovereignty and lawful and legitimate maritime entitlements,” Yang said.

    China claims nearly all of the strategically vital sea despite competing claims by several Southeast Asian neighbors, and has rapidly built artificial islands suitable for military use.

    Washington has responded by sending warships close to Chinese-claimed reefs, angering Beijing.

    The sour ending to the annual Strategic and Economic Dialogue came despite efforts by both sides to smooth out differences that divide the world’s top two economies.

    Speaking to reporters, the two sides seemed to talk past each other on the thorny question of how to settle a conflict in the region kicked off by the Chinese construction.

    Both called for peaceful settlement of the issue and pledged to support freedom of navigation through the region’s air and waters, but their remarks suggested very different visions for achieving those goals.

    The US will continue its “fundamental support for negotiations and a peaceful resolution based on the rule of law”, Kerry said.



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    1. Mariano Patalinjug on

      Yonkers, New York
      08 June 2016

      Okay, the Philippines goes to the UN Security Council in the event that China, as expected ignores a favorable ruling by the PCA in The Hague–as suggested by Ernest Bower.

      That would be an exercise in futility! China is a permanent member of the UN Security Council–and it can be expected to VETO such a move on the part of the Philippines.

      End of story.

      China risks being treated by the world community as a PARIAH, or even as a ROGUE STATE, if, as expected it ignores a ruling by the PCA favorable to the Philippines.


    2. eltee mulawin on

      >>> Mr. Bower and People of the Philippines should know or must know the mechanics or procedures in United Nations Security Council. It is composed Big Five permanent members which are the USA, UK, France, Germany, Russia and China. Each of this nations has the veto power not to agree or turn down any resolution over the resolutions or conclusions by the entire UNSC.


    3. If Duterte is a true Filipino, he must not be afraid to go to war with China!!! Now I’m in doubt really the true Color of our president elect!! I believed he’s a Pro china!! Poor pinas youve elected a person who could not fight for the rights of Filipinos…surrender agad Sa China!!!! It’s a shame…..

    4. tapos na drama ni Pnoy.. nabenta na nya isang isla sa mga intsik.. dapat kausapin na lang tsina kalimutan na mga kaso kaso… one on one talk sa china kailangan dito, hindi kailangan makialam ang ibang bansa sa ating problema sa tsina dahil lalong gumugulo….

    5. Gusto lang kumita nitong si Ernest Bower kung sino man ito. Pagdinala ng Pilipinas sa Security Council ng UN ang usapin sa South China Sea, tapos na kuwento kasi may Veto power ang China at siguradong kakampi rin ang Russia na may Veto power. Akala siguro nitong si Ernest Bower mangmang tayong mga Pilipino.

    6. War is inevitable.Therefore everyone must be prepared for war with China.The saying goes the history will repeat itself if China dont learn the mistake Japan, this will be a big disaster for Beijing, if they attack US, Nato will come with decisive power.This may divide China forever.

      if chinese government dont learn and heed the wisdom of their founding father.they will break their neck beyond repair.